Mitch Evans took victory in the MXGP qualifying heat at the 15th round of the FIM Motocross World Championship which puts him on pole for tomorrow’s main action at the MXGP of Sweden.
Evans took the lead in the qualifying race after controlling the practice times alongside his HRC teammate Tim Gasjer, but Gajser immediately overtook him and the two of them had already opened up a small margin by the end of the first lap. The two riders made the challenging Uddevalla surface look very comfortable as they gradually pulled away from third, clocking lap times that the competition couldn’t match. Third place had fallen more than 10 seconds behind Evans when the race came to a close, giving both riders the best two gate picks for tomorrow’s point-scoring motos. Evans took the chequered flag two seconds ahead of his teammate.
This result has been a long time coming for the Australian, as he finally put all the pieces of the puzzle together in a confident display of riding. He has shown promise on numerous times this season but hasn’t quite been able to do it on Sunday, so that is his aim now and one that is very much achievable after today’s performance.
“It feels really good to get a race win and to be back at the very front of the field,” Evans enthused. “It was a long injury layoff that I suffered and I went through some difficult times, but to be back here is an amazing feeling and just reward for all the hard work I’ve put in. Of course, it is only a Saturday qualification race, so I know I need to replicate this on Sunday in the two motos, but I feel really comfortable out there if I get out the gate well, I feel confident I do the same thing as today. A big thank you to all the people supporting me, to Team HRC for helping me get back to this position and I’m really excited for the motos tomorrow,” Evans concluded.
MXGP – Qualifying Race – Top 10 Classification:
1 Mitchell Evans (AUS, Honda), 24:21.440
2 Tim Gajser (SLO, Honda), +0:02.474
3 Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, Yamaha), +0:10.162
4 Romain Febvre (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:12.011
5 Jorge Prado (ESP, GASGAS), +0:14.438
6 Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Yamaha), +0:15.562
7 Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, Yamaha), +0:24.244
8 Maxime Renaux (FRA, Yamaha), +0:24.560
9 Valentin Guillod (SUI, Yamaha), +0:29.775
10 Ruben Fernandez (ESP, Honda), +0:33.026