Motocross

Tim Gajser and Jorge Prado fastest for French MXGP at Saint Jean d‰ÛªAngely

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Honda's Tim Gasjer showed speed in all three sessions and looked right at home on the hard-packed St Jean D‰ÛªAngely surface. . Photo: Youthstream.
HRC's Tim Gajser continued his good run of form by taking a convincing qualification win at the MXGP of France while Jorge Prado once again topped MX2 qualifying.

The famous French fans created an amazing atmosphere on the hills of Saint Jean d‰ÛªAngely today and were not disappointed with the action on track. The full day of racing kicked off with the pair EMX races and both provided the French fans with plenty to cheer for as their fellow country took the race wins.


MXGP Qualifying got off to an unpredictable start in France today with Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha Official MXGP‰Ûªs Arnaud Tonus taking the lead just less than a week after achieving his long awaited return to the podium in Portugal. The Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha teammate of Tonus, Gautier Paulin, was off to a good start just behind the #4 but crashed after running into the back of the Swiss rider.

Paulin‰Ûªs crash was just at the crest of the first downhill forcing not only him to dodge the rest of the field, but it also caused Antonio Cairoli to go down. Meanwhile at the front Tonus led Ivo Monticelli and Gajser.
Yamaha's Arnaud Tonus continued his great form from last round with second fastest in MXGP. Photo: Youthstream.
The Belgians of Jeremy Van Horebeek, from Honda SR Motoblouz, and Clement Desalle gave chase in 4th in 5th ahead of Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing‰Ûªs Jeremy Seewer and the two Frenchman of Gebben Van Venrooy Benoit Paturel and Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP‰Ûªs Romain Febvre.

Febvre was the first to move forward in the lead group getting around Paturel and filing in behind his teammate Seewer. Next to make moves was the #243 of Gajser as he passed Monticelli and then 2 laps later took the lead from Tonus.

Further back in pack Cairoli and Paulin were both working their way forward picking of riders each lap. By lap 9 Cairoli was up to 13th with Paulin just behind but another crash from Cairoli saw the Frenchman go by along Tanel Leok in what is his 250th career GP.
Clement Desalle rounded out the MXGP top three. Photo: Youthstream.
As the race came towards its conclusion Desalle made it past his compatriot Van Horebeek and the Monticelli. Both Van Horebeek and Monticelli continued to lose positions to the Factory Yamaha pair, Seewer and Febvre.

At the finish it was a dominating win by Gajser with 9.5 second gap over Tonus. Gajser also scored the fastest lap of the race while Desalle, Seewer, and Febvre rounded out the top 5 qualifiers. Paulin and Cairoli made it up to 11th and 14th respectively.

‰ÛÏI really enjoyed today, I had a lot of fun during the race," the Slovenian said. "I didn‰Ûªt have the best of start, I was like 5th but I tried to take time because it was easy to make a mistake. In about the middle of the race I took the lead, made a little gap, and then controlled the rest of the race. I‰Ûªm really looking forward to tomorrow, the start will be really important but hopefully I can get two solid starts and ride well.‰Û
Young Spaniard Jorge Prado once again featured at the top of the field in MX2. Photo: Youthstream.
Prior to the wild qualifying race of MXGP it was the MX2 riders battling over their own start positions in Qualifying for tomorrow‰Ûªs pair of races. The familiar sight of a strong start from Jorge Prado put the now red platted #61 into the lead.

Running second place was Monster Energy Kemea Yamaha Official MX2‰Ûªs Jago Geerts followed by Henry Jacobi and Honda 114 Motorsports Mitch Evans. Tom Vialle was off to a strong 6th at the start of what is his first ever home GP.

By the end of the 2nd lap Vialle moved into the top 5 ahead of Yamaha SM Action MC Migliori‰Ûªs Michele Cervellin to the roar of the French fans. The fastest French MX2 rider in the earlier practice sessions was Brian Moreau. Moreau was in 9th at the start of the qualifying before getting past Monster Energy Kemea Yamaha Official MX2‰Ûªs Ben Watson and then two laps later he also passed Kiwi Dylan Walsh.
The MX2 field head into the hils of Saint Jean d‰ÛªAngely. Photo: Youthstream.
For Walsh, who had a good start in 7th, the qualification race only got worse after being passed by Moreau. Watson, Thomas Kjer Olsen, and Adam Sterry took three more positions from the New Zealander before he was landed on by Yamaha SM Action MC Migliori‰Ûªs Maxime Renaux. Walsh was helped off the track and did not finish the race while Renaux was miraculously able to avoid crashing.

Prior points leader Olsen continued working forward from his 14th place start and took another two spots in the final laps from Moreau and Cervellin to reach 6th as Prado took the win ahead of a strong ride from Geerts while Jacobi, Evans, and Vialle filled in the top five.

‰ÛÏI am feeling very confident, I am feeling very good on the bike so when I am racing I am enjoying it," Prado said. "I am very happy with how everything is going. I had a good start in the qualifying race and led till the end which was key so that I could do my own laps and find some new lines, so I am really looking forward to tomorrow.‰Û
Yamaha's Jago Geerts was second fastest in MX2. Photo: Youthstream.
MXGP Qualifying Race Top Ten:
1. Tim Gajser (SLO, Honda), 24:45.598
2. Arnaud Tonus (SUI, Yamaha), +0:09.521
3. Clement Desalle (BEL, Kawasaki), +0:16.811
4. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Yamaha), +0:20.071
5. Romain Febvre (FRA, Yamaha), +0:25.920
6. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, Honda), +0:27.701
7. Ivo Monticelli (ITA, KTM), +0:28.690
8. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, KTM), +0:29.116
9. Arminas Jasikonis (LTU, Husqvarna), +0:30.618
10. Benoit Paturel (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:36.729

MX2 Qualifying Race Top Ten:
1. Jorge Prado (ESP, KTM), 25:07.757
2. Jago Geerts (BEL, Yamaha), +0:03.054
3. Henry Jacobi (GER, Kawasaki), +0:13.557
4. Mitchell Evans (AUS, Honda), +0:15.267
5. Tom Vialle (FRA, KTM), +0:17.689
6. Thomas Kjer Olsen (DEN, Husqvarna), +0:20.525
7. Michele Cervellin (ITA, Yamaha), +0:27.484
8. Ben Watson (GBR, Yamaha), +0:28.354
9. Brian Strubhart Moreau (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:29.628
10. Maxime Renaux (FRA, Yamaha), +0:30.908

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