Yamaha MXfontaracing’s Kiara Fontanesi brought the heat this weekend in Thailand for round two of the FIM Women’s Motocross World Championship riding a solid and fierce pace in each and every moto to claim her first WMX round win of the year as well as the coveted red plate.
On Saturday, when the gates fell it was Genette Vaage who got the jump and stretched out half a bike length on the approach to turn one before locking it up and crashing causing a bit of carnage which caught out the likes of young Dutch speedster Nancy Van de Ven and the defending champion Yamaha MXFontaracing’s Kiara Fontanesi. With the two Yamaha’s of Fontanesi and Van de Ven down on turn one it was the Kawasaki girls, Team One One Four’s Livia Lancelot and Monster Energy Kawasaki Bud Racing’s Meghan Rutledge who shot past the early race leader, Japanese wildcard Juri Hatao, to lead lap one.
While both Lancelot and Rutledge were setting a good pace up front, they soon found themselves in trouble when Fontanesi started laying down laps four seconds a lap faster than anyone else. With Fontanesi impressively erasing the space between herself and the leaders, it wasn’t long before she made light work of the Kawasaki duo and swiftly took over the lead.
Pure speed wasn’t a problem for the Italian who was clearly in her element out on the jumpy circuit here
in Nakhonchaisri, which meant it was up to Lancelot to up her game if she was to challenge the reigning champ. While Lancelot did manage to rise to the challenge, she ended up biting the dust a couple of laps later.
While Lancelot still managed to recover in second she allowed Rutledge to put in a last minute charge for second but managed to hold strong forcing Rutledge to settle for third.
Meanwhile Yamaha’s Nancy Van de Ven made an amazing recovery after her first turn mishap, to come home in fourth while Twenty Suspension Suzuki’s Larissa Papenmeier rounded out the top five.
WMX Race 1 Top Ten: 1. Kiara Fontanesi (ITA, Yamaha), 24:04.783; 2. Livia Lancelot (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:04.963; 3. Meghan Rutledge (AUS, Kawasaki), +0:06.190; 4. Nancy Van De Ven (NED, Yamaha), +1:02.427; 5. Larissa Papenmeier (GER, Suzuki), +1:09.620; 6. Francesca Nocera (ITA, Suzuki), +1:16.905; 7. Amandine Verstappen (BEL, KTM), +1:19.157; 8. Genette Vaage (NOR, KTM), +1:29.841; 9. Justine Charroux (FRA, Yamaha), +2:00.082; 10. Anne Borchers (GER, Suzuki), +2:01.998.
Race two was a run-away performance for Yamaha MXfontaracing’s Kiara Fontanesi after she snuck up the inside of the holeshotter Nancy Van De Ven to take the early lead.
It wasn’t long before Fontanesi knuckled down and checked out leaving Van de Ven and Lancelot to vie for second. With Lancelot going to work on the eager young Dutch rider, Monster Energy Bud Racing Kawasaki’s Meghan Rutledge was slicing her way through the field after a shocking start left her well outside the top ten.
Rutledge had her life made a little easier when Lancelot hit the deck and handed her third but that was short lived with Lancelot bouncing back fast. After finding her way back around Rutledge, Lancelot dropped the hammer and went around the outside of Van de Ven past pitlane for second. Jumping in her slip stream, ‘Mad Meg’ also barged her way through dropping the Dutch girl back to fourth.
After battling through the intense heat here in Thailand it was Kiara Fontanesi who was on form today, taking yet another convincing victory for the round win and the championship points lead. Meanwhile Lancelot took another second with Rutledge rounding out her weekend with a pair of thirds. Van de Ven and Papenmeier kept the pattern going with their pairs of fourths and fifths.
WMX Race 2 Top Ten: 1. Kiara Fontanesi (ITA, Yamaha), 25:33.131; 2. Livia Lancelot (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:08.888; 3. Meghan Rutledge (AUS, Kawasaki), +0:13.374; 4. Nancy Van De Ven (NED, Yamaha), +0:41.855; 5. Larissa Papenmeier (GER, Suzuki), +1:12.649; 6. Francesca Nocera (ITA, Suzuki), +1:23.847; 7. Genette Vaage (NOR, KTM), +1:36.415; 8. Amandine Verstappen (BEL, KTM), +1:46.642; 9. Juri Hatao (JPN, Kawasaki), -1 lap(s); 10. Justine Charroux (FRA, Yamaha), -1 lap(s)
WMX Overall: 1. Kiara Fontanesi (ITA, YAM), 50 points; 2. Livia Lancelot (FRA, KAW), 44 p.; 3. Meghan Rutledge (AUS, KAW), 40 p.; 4. Nancy Van De Ven (NED, YAM), 36 p.; 5. Larissa Papenmeier (GER, SUZ), 32 p.; 6. Francesca Nocera (ITA, SUZ), 30 p.; 7. Genette Vaage (NOR, KTM), 27 p.; 8. Amandine Verstappen (BEL, KTM), 27 p.; 9. Justine Charroux (FRA, YAM), 23 p.; 10. Marianne Veenstra (NED, HUS), 20 p.
WMX Championship: 1. Kiara Fontanesi (ITA, YAM), 94 points; 2. Livia Lancelot (FRA, KAW), 94 p; 3. Meghan Rutledge (AUS, KAW), 78 p.; 4. Francesca Nocera (ITA, SUZ), 63 p; 5. Nancy Van De Ven (NED, YAM), 61 p.; 6. Genette Vaage (NOR, KTM), 57 p.; 7. Larissa Papenmeier (GER, SUZ), 52 p.; 8. Amandine Verstappen (BEL, KTM), 51 p.; 9. Justine Charroux (FRA, YAM), 44 p.; 10. Anne Borchers (GER, SUZ), 41 p.
WMX Manufacturer: 1. Yamaha, 94 points; 2. Kawasaki, 94 p.; 3. Suzuki, 66 p.; 4. KTM, 58 p.; 5. Honda, 32 p.; 6. Husqvarna, 20 p.