Mitchell Evans rode excellently in both races at this treacherous M.antova track to finish fourth overall at the MXGP of Lombardia. The Team Honda 114 Motorsports rider went eight-six in the mud and the rain to continue his good recent run of results and prove that he is able to perform whatever the conditions. Team Assomotor’s Mathys Boisrame also had a good day, recording his best moto finish of the season with a seventh in race two. This helped him to a 10th overall, which is also the best he has done this year.
After posting the fastest time in timed practice and then coming second in the qualification race, Gajser was confident that he could challenge for another GP victory despite the torrential rain that hit the track. However, he wasn’t able to eliminate the mistakes and even though he posted the fastest lap in both motos, he instead had to settle for his lowest points tally of the season.
With the rain causing problems all over the track, the start straight and first turn was especially affected and it was this area that caught Gajser out in the first moto. After the crash, he had to pull into the pitlane straight away in order to change his goggles, getting back into the race in last position. Mistakes littered his ride as he charged through the field, but despite this, he was still able to get back up to 10th place by the time the chequered flag came out.
He fared much better in race two but found passing harder as the track was becoming more and more one-lined. After losing his goggles due to the roost of another rider, Gajser had to settle for sixth position in what ended up being a disappointing day for the Slovenian rider.
As Gajser struggled, team mate Bogers put in the best ride of his MXGP career, finishing in an extremely impressive second place in race two. After also being involved in a start turn crash in race one and only managing to get back to 20th, Bogers was highly motivated to do well in conditions that he enjoys. And that’s exactly what he did in the second race, rounding the first corner in third place and moving into second after a couple of laps. From then on, he put in a strong ride, holding off the challenge of the rider in third, before pulling away and finishing just seven seconds behind the winner. Having put in a lot of training during the break, it was great to see that work bear fruit so quickly and it’s great motivation for this next batch of races.
Next weekend Team HRC to Agueda, Portugal for the sixth of the series before then heading to St Jean D’Angely in France the weekend after. Both Gajser and Bogers are looking forward to getting back to the race track and will use these few days for testing as they look to come in as ready as possible, for what should be a completely different surface than this weekend.
After recovering from injury for the last four weeks, Team HRC’s Calvin Vlaanderen returned to race action at the MXGP of Lombardia in what were extremely tough, muddy conditions in Mantova. A sunny day on Saturday preceded overnight rain which continued throughout race day, turning the track into a muddy mess which caused many riders problems in both races.
Unfortunately in race one, Vlaanderen was caught up in a first turn crash that included five or six other riders and he had remount in almost dead last position. With their only being one fast line around a lot of the track, passing was very tricky but the Honda CRF250RW rider didn’t give up and forced his way back into the points to finish 17th. A much better jump in race two meant he was clear of any problems and he could try and find a good rhythm on the difficult terrain. Despite having just a couple of days training in the last month, Vlaanderen kept a solid pace and was able to place inside the top 10, giving everyone confidence that he will get back to the form that saw him finish just off the podium spots in the first three rounds.
With the MXGP of Portugal next weekend, and France the week after that, there isn’t too much time to get ready but Vlaanderen and Team HRC will work hard to make sure he is fully prepared and raring to go when the gate next drops.
Unfortunately Jeremy van Horebeek was unable to finish race one after being caught up in a first turn crash. The Belgian rider then had to comeback after another bad start, to work his way into 16th place.
Tim Gajser Quote
It was a tough day, after a whole night of raining. The track was a bit sketchy and one-lined and it made the start very important. Unfortunately in the first race I crashed right at the beginning and had to go directly into the pit lane to change my goggles and remove my neck brace. During the race I made a few mistakes because I had to leave the main line to make the passes and this was where the track was very tricky. I was really disappointed to finish 10th and it’s not where I wanted to be. I had a slightly better start in race two, rounding the second bend in around 10th or 12th position. I was able to make a number of quick passes but when I got to behind Coldenhoff, I just couldn’t make the pass. I knew I was faster and I posted the fastest lap of the race but I just couldn’t get around him because of how one-lined the track was. Because of all the roost, I had to throw my goggles away and then it was very difficult. It was a horrible day but that’s sometimes how motocross can be. I will move on from here and head to Portugal extremely motivated to get back to winning ways.
Brian Bogers Quote
My good day actually started last night when it started raining, so that made the track a bit of a mess but I actually quite like these sort of conditions. Overall it wasn’t too bad and definitely not as bad as something like Russia a couple of years back but I knew that I could do well. In the first heat I got a terrible start because I crashed and got stuck under the bike and I couldn’t move until somebody helped me. After that I had to change my goggles and even with that I ended up 20th. It wasn’t the result I wanted so I was very focused for the second race, especially at the start and that helped me turn the first corner in third place. After a couple of laps, the rider in front of me crashed, so I stayed in second place for the rest of the race. My speed was very good, my fitness was good and I’m just really happy with this result. This whole team do a great job, they support me and keep believing in me and I know with their help I can do this on a normal track too. We are still building and this is great step in the process.
Calvin Vlaanderen Quote
The day was completely different from yesterday with all the rain, and that meant the riding was a lot harder. I went down at the start of the first moto and had to pass a lot of riders to get back to 17th place. Then in race two I had a better start but made some small mistakes and ended up in 10th place. My riding wasn’t great but I am happy I could come here and race and get some points and I think that’s good for the next few weekends. Obviously we need to improve but with the help of my team I know that we will do everything possible to make that happen. I also know that each day my leg feel better and that will help me get back to my pre-injury form when I was challenging for podium positions.