It was a tough day for Mitch Evans at what was the hottest and toughest MXGP of the year, the MXGP of Sardegna in Italy.
Evans’ results definitely don’t reflect the speed the Australian was able to show this weekend.
In race one, the #43 was the fastest rider on the track at one stage of the moto, passing riders and moving towards his first top-five finish of the season. However, the high temperatures took their toll and with just a few laps remaining, Evans dropped down the field and crossed the line just out of the points.
Looking to make amends in race two, he stormed out the gate and looked like he’d be fighting for a holeshot. Unfortunately, as he looked to sweep around the outside of the turn, he hit a soft spot of sand and buried his front end. In the aftermath of the crash, another rider ripped off his front brake and he had to pull into the pits to try and fix the bike. By the time he re-joined the race, he was well down the field, but he still was able to do a couple of really fast laps before pulling out to fight another day.
“For three-quarters of race one, I was really excited for how the weekend would turn out,” Evans said. “However, then the heat got to me and I really struggled to finish the moto, and then race two was even worse.
“In race one I had moved up from eighth to fifth and I was closing in on fourth place and I was really happy with how I was riding. I’d had a good start as well and had found a good rhythm and things were really flowing, on what was a very rough and difficult track. Then I just really struggled to maintain the same feeling and dropped down the field. It was really tough and a big shame because I was riding so well.
“In race two, I wanted to come out and try my best once again and I really got a good start, and was in the lead heading down the straight. Unfortunately, I found a soft spot of sand as I rounded the first corner and tucked the front wheel. By the time I got back on the bike, I noticed it was damaged so I had to pull into the mechanics to fix the issue. Of course, by then I was way behind the rest of the field, so I tried to do a couple of fast laps before pulling off the track. It was a disappointing weekend results-wise, but I felt my riding is getting better and I’m on the right path,” Ebans concluded.
Evans will be hoping to put together the complete package at the ninth round of the championship in Spain on May 29 and get the points-haul his speed deserves.