2011 FIM World Motocross
Clement Desalle and Ken Roczen received once more the Lovemytime pole position award after winning Saturdayday’s qualifying races. The high temperatures made the riders struggle a little bit more than usual and they are all looking forward to seeing how the weather is going to be, as heavy rain has been forecasted for tomorrow.
It was not an easy victory for Clement Desalle, as Max Nagl and Antonio Cairoli, second and third in the MX1 qualifying race, where riding really close to the Belgian rider. Shaun Simpson rode second almost half of the race, but he could only finish fourth.
Ken Roczen obtained his fourth Lovemytime pole position award of the season, over the likes of his team mate Jeffrey Herlings. Zach Osborne took the holeshot and he finally crossed the finish line in the third position.
The first race of the UEM EMX-2 class started with a little bit of sun but ended under heavy storm conditions. During the last laps, many riders exchanged their positions and home rider Romain Febvre succeeded in finishing first. Second was Russian Aleksandr Tonkov and third was Charles Lefrançois.
Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1’s Desalle started third and he overtook Simpson in lap five. Desalle quickly close the gap with Nagl, who was racing at the front, and with three laps to go, Desalle did a great move over Nagl and the Belgian kept the lead until the chequered flag.
Red Bull Teka KTM Factory Racing MX2’s Nagl took the holeshot and led the race with authority until the very end, when Desalle imposed an impressive rhythm and went out with the win. Nagl was satisfied with the second place, as he will be able to choose a good starting position for tomorrow’s races.
His team mate Antonio Cairoli started fourth and a problem on his rear brake made things more difficult for the Italian. Even riding without rear brake for a while, Cairoli managed to keep his fourth position, and when he felt that the rear brake working again, he was very close to overtake Nagl. Finally, Cairoli had to settle down with the third place.
LS Honda Racing’s Simpson did a great race starting from an initial second position and crossing the finish line fourth. The British rider got the second best time practice before the qualifying race, so he might be able to fight for the podium in tomorrow’s races.
Completing the top five was Evgeny Bobryshev from Honda World Motocross. The Russian did a very solid race even not being very comfortable riding in the French track. Bobryshev has always struggled in Saint Jean d’Angely, but this year he might be able to improve his last year performances.
David Philippaerts did not have a very good start and he started down into the 23rd position. The Italian did an incredible race and finish seventh behind Steve Ramon.
Ben Townley got a solid ninth position, followed by Xavier Boog and Steven Frossard, who had some problems with his goggles and had some difficulties to finish the race.
MX1 Qualifying Race top ten: 1. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), 25:16.274; 2. Maximilian Nagl (GER, KTM), +0:01.371; 3. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), +0:01.919; 4. Shaun Simpson (GBR, Honda), +0:29.690; 5. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:36.953; 6. Steve Ramon (BEL, Suzuki), +0:38.746; 7. David Philippaerts (ITA, Yamaha), +0:43.562; 8. Rui Goncalves (POR, Honda), +0:45.884; 9. Benjamin Townley (NZL, Kawasaki), +0:48.882; 10. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:49.596;
Red Bull Teka KTM Factory Racing MX2’s Roczen won his fourth MX2 qualifying race of the season and he will be able to choose the best spot at the starting grid. The German was fourth in the opening lap but he was already leading the race in the first lap and crossed the finish line with seven seconds advantage over Herlings.
Jeffrey Herlings almost took the holeshot, but he was down to third position in the first lap. Herlings overtook Osborne after a couple of laps and he finished second behind Roczen.
Bike-it Cossworth Wild Wolf Yamaha’s Osborne took the holeshot, but Roczen took the lead already in the first lap. The American rider is very satisfied with such third position as he is convinced that he can do a good performance at tomorrow’s races.
Tommy Searle from CLS Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit fought with Herlings for the third place at the very beginning of the race. However, the British rider was pushing maybe too hard and some little mistakes made him lose some time and he had to settle down with a final fourth position.
Monster Energy Yamaha’s Gautier Paulin did a very good start, but he confessed that he made many mistakes that made him lose a lot of time. He has never been on the podium in France, so his main goal is to have good starts tomorrow and do his best to be on the podium in front of his crowd.
Arnaud Tonus, who got the second best result in the pre-qualifying practice, finished sixth followed by Christophe Charlier and Nicolas Aubin. Joel Roelants was ninth and Max Anstie completed the top ten.
MX2 Qualifying Race top ten: 1. Ken Roczen (GER, KTM), 25:38.113; 2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:07.581; 3. Zachary Osborne (USA, Yamaha), +0:17.246; 4. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:26.200; 5. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Yamaha), +0:30.007; 6. Arnaud Tonus (SUI, Yamaha), +0:36.841; 7. Christophe Charlier (FRA, Yamaha), +0:38.797; 8. Nicolas Aubin (FRA, KTM), +0:43.936; 9. Joel Roelants (BEL, KTM), +1:06.171; 10. Max Anstie (GBR, Kawasaki), +1:08.091;
We got a really thrilling first race of the UEM EMX-2 Championship as the weather conditions changed dramatically from the beginning to the chequered flag. By the end of the lap, the riders had to adapt their riding to the heavy rain and up to three riders exchanged the lead.
Charles Lefrancois started dominating the race, but a Aleksandr Tonkov, who is third in the championship, overtook the home rider already in the third lap. By the end of the race, both riders exchanged the lead again, but it was finally other French Romain Febvre who crossed the finish line in the first position.
Jens Getteman, who was second overall in Valkenswaard, finished 19th and Michael Van Wezel, who won the first round of the series, did not qualify to take part in the races.
GP OF FRANCE – QUICK FACTS
Circuit length: 1590 mt
Type of ground: hard pack
Temperature: 30° C
Weather conditions: sunny and hot, but heavy storm by the end of the day
Sunday: EMX2 Warm up 8:30; MX2 Warm up 9:00; MX1 Warm up 9:30; EMX2 Race 2 10:15; MX2 Grand Prix Race 1 12:10; MX1 Grand Prix Race 1 13:10; MX2 Grand Prix Race 2 15:03; MX1 Grand Prix race 2 16:03.