MXGP

Tim Gajser And Liam Everts Top The Qualifying Races At The MXGP of Italy

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Photo of motocross rider  Tim Gasjer at the 2024 MXGP of Italy
Tim Gajser put in a dominating performance at the muddy Maggiora circuit to take the qualification win – his third in a row – and extend his lead at the top of the 2024 MXGP Championship to nine points.

As the FIM World Motocross Championship rolled into the classic venue of Maggiora Park for the MXGP of Italy, so too did the rainclouds to make it a muddy start to the weekend in a repeat of the 2023 experience!

After extensive work to the track, the Qualifying Races served up another tough challenge for the MXGP stars to master, and once more dealing with the mud was a necessary skill to gain some serious Championship points!

In MXGP it was a fifth Qualifying Race win for Tim Gajser, who enjoyed utter domination with a near 34-second victory over Jeffrey Herlings.

The MX2 battle went right down to the final lap, as Liam Everts took the win with a late move past Simon Laengenfelder, who still moves back up to second in the Championship.

MXGP

Tim Gajser had a perfect start to the day with the fastest lap in both Free Practice and Time Practice sessions. His speed was amazing in the second session as he was over four seconds faster than second-placed rider Brian Bogers, who took the inside start gate.

At the start, Gajser rocketed into the lead as Herlings carved across the front of Bogers to claim second place, although he had to deal with Andrea Bonacorsi to make sure of the position. Bogers pulled an amazing move through the second and third corners to fire from sixth into third! The Dutchman would chase his record-holding countryman Herlings, right to the flag, but the leading three positions would not change from there.

Bonacorsi got cross-rutted up the first big hill, and Kevin Horgmo could not avoid him! The two riders did get up and charged back to an eventual ninth and tenth, deserving their small points haul with brilliant riding through the pack.

One rider who didn’t get a good start, for once, was reigning World Champion, Jorge Prado. Rounding the first corner in the mid-pack, the Spaniard moved forward through the race to claim sixth position by the chequered flag, almost catching the fight for fourth between Jeremy Seewer and Calvin Vlaanderen. The Swiss rider would hold off the Dutchman to claim that position. Behind Prado, Horgmo’s teammate Valentin Guillod scored points for seventh, and Mattia Guadagnini, resplendent in his Italian football kit colours, took eighth ahead of Bonacorsi and Horgmo.

Gajser’s win builds his Championship lead to nine points over Prado, who must be hoping that the forecast of a dry day tomorrow comes true, as he could be a serious threat at the venue where he was crowned World Champion last year!

“It was great! I had a lot of fun as the track is not easy. It also makes you being careful of when to attack and when to hold back. The whole day I was feeling great today.. Of course, the starts will be super important tomorrow, but I’m very happy with the start I just took in Quali race so I’m really looking forward.,” Gajser said.

Photo of motocross rider Liam Everts at the 2024 MXGP of Italy
Liam Everts came out on top of the MX2 qualifying race at Maggiora Park in heave conditions. Photo: Ray Archer

MX2

We are used to seeing speed from the Nestaan Husqvarna Factory Racing team this year, so Lucas Coenen being fastest in Free Practice was no surprise, although with a late run in Time Practice, local hero Ferruccio Zanchi put his name on top of the timesheets to grab the first gate pick for the Qualifying Race!

Into the first corner, it was Laengenfelder who claimed the holeshot, just railing around the outside of Zanchi, who in turn held of a move from last weekend’s GP winner Sacha Coenen. The Belgian Liam Everts and Andrea Adamo were immediately behind him, but Adamo dropped the bike on the top corner before the “Elevator Shaft” downhill.

Problems happened to the two Nestaan Husqvarna Factory Racing teammates, who were 1-2 in the Championship before the race, as Kay de Wolf collided with the Mikkel Haarup, and Lucas Coenen also left the circuit on the opening lap. His brother briefly came to a halt as well but managed to stay in fourth place until the flag.

De Wolf remounted and worked forward to take tenth position, keeping his perfect Saturday scoring record intact for the year, even if he was a lap down at the finish! This leaves him now 54 points clear of second place.

Laengenfelder began to build a considerable lead and looked certain to take his first Qualifying Race win of the season, but Everts had other ideas after passing Zanchi for second on lap four. EMX250 riders, Valerio Lata and Cas Valk, on a weekend off from that series, had their own little battle in the top ten, with Lata holding on for fifth ahead of a recovering Adamo at the finish! Valk would finish eighth behind Oriol Oliver, but ahead of David Braceras.

After lapping De Wolf, Laengenfelder got held up behind some riders he was lapping for the second time, and suddenly Everts was right with him as they took the one-lap board! Going for an outside move at the top of the biggest hill, Everts had the speed, but Laengenfelder made a move to block the Belgian just a fraction of a second too late, and instead, the German hit the floor! With a quick remount, he would still collect second place to lift himself back ahead of Lucas Coenen for second in the standings, but it was mud master Everts who claimed his second Saturday win of the year and strengthened his position of fourth in the Championship.

“The last ten minutes, I really felt like I could push and felt good again,” Everts said. “Last few weekends have been difficult to say the least but we’re working on it and this is definitely going in the right direction. I was quite close for the pass (on Laengenfelder) but it’s racing and today I didn’t back out of it.”

Round ten of the 2024 MXGP World Championships will take place tomorrow where the fight will continue at Maggiora Park.

MXGP – RAM Qualifying Race – Classification:
1 Tim Gajser (SLO, Honda), 25:11.162
2 Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:33.900
3 Brian Bogers (NED, Fantic), +0:39.443
4 Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Kawasaki), +0:44.488
5 Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, Yamaha), +0:47.309
6 Jorge Prado (ESP, GASGAS), +1:00.001
7 Valentin Guillod (SUI, Honda), +1:25.125
8 Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, Husqvarna), +1:26.874
9 Andrea Bonacorsi (ITA, Yamaha), +1:28.176
10 Kevin Horgmo (NOR, Honda), +1:29.501

MXGP – World Championship – Classification:
1 Tim Gajser (SLO, HON), 464 Points
2 Jorge Prado (ESP, GAS), 455 Points
3 Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 395 Points
4 Romain Febvre (FRA, KAW), 327 Points
5 Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, YAM), 305 Points
6 Jeremy Seewer (SUI, KAW), 296 Points
7 Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, FAN), 277 Points
8 Pauls Jonass (LAT, HON), 274 Points
9 Kevin Horgmo (NOR, HON), 189 Points
10 Brian Bogers (NED, FAN), 180 Points

MX2 – RAM Qualifying Race – Classification:
1 Liam Everts (BEL, KTM), 26:13.639
2 Simon Laengenfelder (GER, GASGAS), +0:08.720
3 Ferruccio Zanchi (ITA, Honda), +0:24.333
4 Sacha Coenen (BEL, KTM), +1:28.567
5 Valerio Lata (ITA, GASGAS), +1:31.464
6 Andrea Adamo (ITA, KTM), +1:32.927
7 Oriol Oliver (ESP, KTM), +1:43.798
8 Cas Valk (NED, KTM), +1:46.685
9 David Braceras (ESP, Fantic), +2:25.066
10 Kay de Wolf (NED, Husqvarna), -1 lap(s)

MX2 – World Championship – Classification:
1 Kay de Wolf (NED, HUS), 444 Points
2 Simon Laengenfelder (GER, GAS), 390 Points
3 Lucas Coenen (BEL, HUS), 388 Points
4 Liam Everts (BEL, KTM), 351 Points
5 Andrea Adamo (ITA, KTM), 332 Points
6 Mikkel Haarup (DEN, TRI), 287 Points
7 Rick Elzinga (NED, YAM), 278 Points
8 Sacha Coenen (BEL, KTM), 235 Points
9 Thibault Benistant (FRA, YAM), 226 Points
10 Quentin Marc Prugnieres (FRA, KAW), 174 Points

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