On day one of the Portuguese GP, Clement Desalle obtained his third MX1 Lovemytime pole position award, while Ken Roczen obtained his fifth one. Max Nagl and Antonio Cairoli finished second and third respectively in the MX1 and Tommy Searle and Arnaud Tonus were second and third in MX2.
Clement Desalle dominated the first heat, but it was Evgeny Bobryshev who led the first part of the MX1 Qualifying Race. The Russian made a mistake and could only finish seventh.
In the MX2 class, Ken Roczen did not make a very good start, but he was able to take the lead already in the first lap. Nicolas Aubin took the holeshot, but he crossed the finish line in fifth position.
The first race of the UEM EMX-2 class also took place today in Agueda and Dylan Ferrandis obtained his second heat win of the season. Second was Jens Getteman and third was Charles Lefrançois.
Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1’s Desalle took advantage of Bobryshev’s mistake when he was second and took the lead until the chequered flag. Red Plate holder Desalle is very confident for tomorrow and he will try to obtain another GP win and increase the point difference with his pursuers.
Red Bull Teka KTM Factory Racing MX1’s Nagl took the holeshot, but in the opening lap he was already overtaken by Evgeny Bobryshev and Clement Desalle. His second position in the qualifying race was very important for the German rider, as he was not really lucky in the French GP.
His team-mate Antonio Cairoli finished third and he admitted that he struggled a little to find a good rhythm and fight for the victory. The Italian will work on the settings of his KTM machine to see if he can be at the top of the rostrum tomorrow after the races.
LS Honda Racing’s De Dycker did a very good race and he managed to finish fourth after starting from an initial sixth position. The Belgian rider is 12th in the championship, so he really needs to do a good performance tomorrow to get some valuable points for the Championship.
Kawasaki Racing Team’s Boog obtained a solid fifth place and he will be able to choose a good starting position for tomorrow’s races. The French rider missed the podium in France for just three points, so he might obtain his first podium of the season this weekend in Agueda.
Home rider Rui Gonçalves could only be 11th as he had a problem with his rear brake. However, he is confident for tomorrow’s races and delight his crowed with a great performance.
David Philippaerts and Steven Frossard crashed at the beginning of the MX1 Qualifying race and they could only finish 12th and 16th respectively.
MX1 Qualifying Race top ten: 1. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), 23:47.136; 2. Maximilian Nagl (GER, KTM), +0:02.201; 3. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), +0:10.027; 4. Ken de Dycker (BEL, Honda), +0:13.494; 5. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:18.378; 6. Steve Ramon (BEL, Suzuki), +0:20.886; 7. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:24.779; 8. Shaun Simpson (GBR, Honda), +0:31.571; 9. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, Suzuki), +0:32.017; 10. Jonathan Barragan (ESP, Kawasaki), +0:35.418;
Red Bull Teka KTM Factory Racing MX2’s Roczen admitted that he was not really happy with his start, but he was satisfied with his riding as he finished first, almost 23 second ahead of second qualified Tommy Searle. Such victory was very good for Roczen’s self confidence as he was only fifth in France.
CLS Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit’s Searle crossed the finish line in second position. The British rider explained that they need to do some changes on his bike, so they can be more competitive and try to obtain another overall win as they did in Saint Jean d’Angely last weekend.
Third was Bike-it Cosworth Wild Wolf Yamaha’s Tonus, who overtook Aubin with only two laps to go. The Swiss rider has ridden at the front in the previous Grand Prix, so he might be fighting for the podium tomorrow in the Portuguese track.
Monster Energy Yamaha’s Paulin was down to 12th position in the opening lap, but he managed to finish fourth in today’s MX2 Qualifying race. The French rider has been on the podium in the last two Grand Prix, so he might be able to fight for the win against the likes of Roczen, Herlings and Searle.
KTM HDI MX Team’s Aubin did an incredible start and he led the opening lap. However, he could not stand Roczen’s preassure and he was already down to second position in the first lap. The French was finally fifth, but it was definitely one of his best races this season.
Jeffrey Herlings crashed when he was riding in third position and he crossed the finish line sixth, ahead of Osborne and Anstie.
Jordi Tixier and Michael Leib crashed during today’s MX2 Qualifying race and, although they are not injured, they could not finish the race.
MX2 Qualifying Race top ten: 1. Ken Roczen (GER, KTM), 25:36.182; ; 2. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:22.829; 3. Arnaud Tonus (SUI, Yamaha), +0:26.637; 4. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Yamaha), +0:27.606; 5. Nicolas Aubin (FRA, KTM), +0:33.255; 6. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:46.585; 7. Zachary Osborne (USA, Yamaha), +0:50.746; 8. Max Anstie (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:51.649; 9. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), +0:57.547; 10. Harri Kullas (FIN, Yamaha), +0:58.750;
The Portuguese track is also hosting the third round of the UEM EMX-2 series and Dylan Ferrandis imposed an incredible rhythm and once he took the lead in lap four, he opened and huge gap with his pursuers and crossed the finish line 22 second ahead second classified, Jens Getteman. Third was Charles Lefrançois and Romain Febvre and Donny Bastemeijer were fourth and fifth respectively.
Aleksandr Tonkov, who was the red plate holder after the French round, could not take part in today’s race, as he injured his left hand during the free practice. The Russian rider might be able to race in Spain, but it will all depend on how his injury evolves.
GP OF PORTUGAL – QUICK FACTS
Circuit length: 1500 mt
Type of ground: hard pack
Temperature: 27° C
Weather conditions: sunny
Sunday: EMX2 Warm up 8:30; MX2 Warm up 9:00; MX1 Warm up 9:30; EMX2 Race 2 10:15; MX2 Grand Prix Race 1 12:10; MX1 Grand Prix Race 1 13:10; MX2 Grand Prix Race 2 15:03; MX1 Grand Prix race 2 16:03.