HERLINGS AGAIN DOUBLES HIS LUCK WITH A 1-1 RESULT IN GP OF FRANCE!
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jeffrey “The Bullet” Herlings was once again in blistering form at the French circuit of Saint Jean d’Angely on Sunday when he delivered two typically powerful MX2 motos to seal his eighth GP from nine so far held this season. Tony Cairoli finishes third in MXGP and still holds the red plate as championship leader.
Jeffrey Herlings did not race in Brazil because of a shoulder injury, but has dominated every other outing this season. He now has a commanding 45-point lead in the championship. Factory teammate Jordi Tixier finished in third overall after racing to a 4-3 result on the hard pack French circuit, last visited by the MX World Championship in 2012. Both ride KTM 250 SX-F machines.
The MX2 was typical Herlings, who has now evolved into a top rider on all surfaces, as well as his personal specialty of racing on sand. It was also his thirty ninth career GP win!
Herlings: “I had a good heat race yesterday so I came out in pole position today and really checked out in the first moto. The second moto was a little more competitive. Tonus was really close for the first 15 minutes but then I was also able to make a gap on him. Now I have 45-points on Tonus so I really had a good weekend.”
For Tixier it was a good weekend because he was able to put aside the pressure to race and perform in front of his home French crowd. “I was happy about both my motos. I had a good fight with Roman Febvre in the second race and we knew whoever was in front was going to be on the podium. I was also pretty happy to be the first French rider on the box this weekend and that I was able to better handle the pressure of racing in front of my home crowd. It was a cool weekend.”
MX2 team manager Stefan Everts said he was satisfied with his riders: “Jordi did well. He struggled a bit at some points during the race but he managed fourth in the first moto. He was better and stronger all through the second moto. He attacked Febvre and managed to keep him at a distance. It was good for him to take the podium because last year in France he faded away. This year he came through and he won some confidence in front of his home crowd. "
Everts said Herlings had been really strong this weekend. “He has finally dialed in his starts. He’s been struggling with this for some while. We got him to shift up a bit at the start and this is a little bit the key point for him. He was strong in the first moto. There was a bit of pressure from Tonus at the beginning of the second moto but he stayed calm and didn’t make any mistakes.”
Cairoli finishes third in MXGP; still holds red plate as championship leader
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s multiple world champion Tony Cairoli had his share of bad luck in the MXGP of France on Sunday but still salvaged a 2-3 result for overall third.
The Italian rider got two excellent starts in his motos on the KTM 350 SX-F and although being pursued hard by rival Clement Desalle, looked a winner right up to the final stages of each race. He was more than two seconds clear of Desalle in his first moto when he made a mistake and slipped off the track only to see Desalle go flying past. Cairoli put in some stunning fast laps to cut the four seconds he lost in the incident to just a bike length only to see Desalle cross the line in front of him.
Cairoli surged into an early lead in his second moto, again with Desalle in hot pursuit. He managed to distance himself from the Belgian rider by 2.2 seconds and seemed set to take the decisive moto win and the overall GP victory. Again, with only a couple of laps left to ride, Cairoli had a slip in concentration and this time both Desalle and Jeremy van Horebeek charged past him. His third place finish in the second moto was enough to give him overall third.
Cairoli: “I was riding a good pace in the first moto and was controlling the race but then I found some strange ruts, I lost the back and slid off the track. Then I got stuck in the mud and Clement passed me. I came close to catching him but it was not enough to take the win. I took the holeshot in the second race but I was not focused enough and the track was very sketchy. I’m pretty happy with my riding but this mistake cost me the GP win.”
Cairoli’s MXGP teammate Ken de Dycker finished with a 22-17 result on the KTM 450 SX-F for overall twenty-third. He said he was frustrated to be still hampered with the after effects of an injured wrist that is not only preventing him from training hard to get back in shape after a long injury break but also hampered his riding.
Next Round: June 15, 2014 – MXGP of Italy, Maggiora
Results MXGP Saint Jean d'Angely
1. Clement Desalle (BEL), Suzuki (1-1)
2. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL), Yamaha (3-2)
3. Tony Cairoli (ITA), KTM (2-3)
4. Steven Frossard (FRA), Kawasaki (6-4)
5. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS), Honda (5-5)
7. Shaun Simpson (GBR), KTM (8-10)
9. Matiss Karro (LAT), KTM (11-8)
21. Ken de Dycker (BEL), KTM (22-17)
Standings MXGP after 9 of 17 rounds
1. Cairoli, 393 points
2. Desalle, 373
3. Van Horebeek, 358
4. Kevin Strijbos (BEL), Suzuki, 276
5. Gautier Paulin (FRA), Kawasaki, 205
7. Simpson, 183
30. de Dycker, 12
Manufacturers Standings MXGP after 9 of 17 rounds
1. KTM, 393 points
2. Suzuki, 383
3. Yamaha, 358
Results MX2 Saint Jean d'Angely
1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED), KTM (1-1)
2. Arnaud Tonus (SUI), Kawasaki (2-2)
3. Jordi Tixier (FRA), KTM (4-3)
4. Romain Febvre (FRA), Husqvarna (5-4)
5. Valentin Guillod (SUI), KTM (3-9)
Standings MX2 after 9 of 17 rounds
1. Herlings, 394 points
2. Tonus, 349
3. Febvre, 297
4. Tixier, 291
5. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA), Kawasaki, 278
8. Guillod, 205
9. Jose Butron (ESP), KTM, 199
Manufacturers Standings MX2 after 9 of 17 rounds
1. KTM, 424 points
2. Kawasaki, 375
3. Husqvarna, 303