The deep roots of Valkenswaard are ready to welcome the second Grand Prix of the 2011 FIM Motocross World Championship with Clement Desalle and Ken Roczen being the Championship leaders of the MX1 and MX2 classes respectively. The Grand Prix of the Netherlands will take place on Sunday 24th April with the qualifying races and on Easter Monday with the Grand Prix races.
Clement Desalle got the red plate in Sevlievo, but he was tight in points with Steven Frossard. While the third step of the podium was for Jonathan Barragán, who finished with the same points as German Max Nagl. MX1 riders showed how fit they are and how much they have trained during the wintertime, so a thrilling Championship is guaranteed this season.
German young talent Ken Roczen dominated the whole Grand Prix in Sevlievo, but Jeffrey Herlings rides home this weekend and he already proved last year how fast he can be on the sand. Tommy Searle was very consistent during the weekend in Bulgaria, finishing second overall on his comeback to the FIM MX2 World Championship.
Valkenswaard will also host the first round of the FIM Veterans World Cup, as well as the first appearance of the UEM EMX2 class, which initially counts with 107 entry riders.
Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1’s Clement Desalle left Sevlievo victorious after finishing at the top of the rostrum on his first appearance of the season. Last year, the Belgian could not take part in the second race of the Dutch Grand Prix as he dislocated his right shoulder during race one, so the current red plate holder will have to prove his talent on the sand this weekend in Valkenswaard.
The big surprise of the Grand Prix of Bulgaria was Monster Energy Yamaha’s Steven Frossard, after obtaining the second overall position on his debut in the MX1 class. Last year he finished third overall, so he might obtain his maiden MX1 Grand Prix victory in front of the Dutch crowd.
Third was Kawasaki Racing’s Jonathan Barragán, who proved to himself, his team and his fans that he is fully fit again to fight for the first positions of the MX1 Championship. The Spaniard could not take part on last year’s Dutch Grand Prix due to an injury on his hip, so he will do his best to show his riding skills on the sand this weekend.
German Max Nagl did an outstanding first race in Sevlievo, but his sixth position in the second moto made him be out of the podium with the same points as Barragán. Nagl finished fifth last year in Valkenswaard, so he is now focused on improving such position on his new 350cc KTM.
Rui Gonçalves rounded the top five in Sevlievo after a very consistent weekend with his new Honda World Motocross team.
2010 FIM MX1 World Champion Antonio Cairoli finished ninth at the Grand Prix of Bulgaria. The Italian twisted his left knee during the first heat, so he might not be fully fit to repeat his last year’s overall victory in Valkenswaard.
2010 MX1 PODIUM:
1. Antonio Cairoli
2. Steve Ramon
3. David Philippaerts
2010 MX1 POLEMAN: Antonio Cairoli
Red Bull Teka KTM Factory Racing’s Ken Roczen arrives in Valkenswaard being the clear dominant of the MX2 class. However, the German will race in Jeffrey Herlings’ soil, and he knows that it will be difficult to improve his last year’s overall second place.
Tommy Searle from CLS Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit team left Sevlievo with very good feelings on his comeback to the series. The British talent is ready to race again in the sand after his two years stay in the USA.
The third overall position in Bulgaria was for Red Bull Teka KTM Factory rider Jeffrey Herlings, who plays home this weekend in Valkenswaard. The 16-year-old rider obtained his maiden Grand Prix victory last year in Valkenswaard on his debut in the MX2 class, so the Dutch is ready to repeat his performance in front of his crowd.
Monster Energy Yamaha’s Gautier Paulin missed the podium in Sevlievo, but he proved that his fitness and his riding have improved notoriously. The French rider could not take part in last year’s race in Valkenswaard due to an injury, so he might be the big surprise of the weekend.
American Zach Osborne completed the top five of the first Grand Prix of the season and he is now determined to improve his 11th overall position obtained last year in Valkenswaard.
2010 MX2 PODIUM:
1. Jeffrey Herlings
2. Ken Roczen
3. Steven Frossard
2010 MX2 POLEMAN: Ken Roczen
The first round of the FIM Veterans World Cup will be hosted this weekend in Valkenswaard. 2010 Wold Champion Mats Nilsson is committed to repeat his overall victory in Valkenswaard, but he will have to test his talent with other 42 riders, including runner up of the 2010 season Pascal Bal and third in the championship Erwin Hendrickx.
The UEM EMX2 Championship is also starting this weekend in Valkenswaard with up to 107 entry riders. On Sunday, they will all have to fight for a place for Monday’s races, where only 40 riders will be able to fight for the overall victory.
Sunday: VMX Free Practice 7:20; EMX2 Free + Qualifying Time Practice Group A 7:55; EMX2 Free + Qualifying Time Practice Group B 8:35; MX2 Free Practice 9:30; MX1 Free Practice 10:15; VMX Time Practice 11:00; EMX2 Qualifying Race Group A 12:10; EMX2 Qualifying Race Group B 12:45; MX2 Pre-Qualifying Practice 13:15; MX1-Pre Qualifying Practice 14:00; VMX Race 1 15:10; MX2 Qualifying Race 16:10; MX1 Qualifying Race 17:00; EMX2 Last Chance Qualifying Practice 17:45; VMX Race 2 18:40; EMX2 B-Final 19:20.
Monday: EMX2 Warm up 8:30; MX2 Warm up 9:00; MX1 Warm up 9:30; EMX2 Race 1 10:20; MX2 Grand Prix Race 1 12:10; MX1 Grand Prix Race 1 13:10; EMX2 Race 2 14:10; MX2 Grand Prix Race 2 15:03; MX1 Grand Prix race 2 16:03.