Pellicari’s Swiss team rider Julien Bill got the pole position for tomorrow’s MX3 round of Umbria, at the spectacular Castiglione del Lago track in Italy. With maximum temperatures of 28°C matching the ones the FIM MX3 World Championship had only a week before in Finland, some ‘warm’ fights are expected tomorrow.
After being over a second faster in this morning’s free and pre-qualifying practice sessions than R.S.C. Italia Corse Orion RS Petrol team rider Martin Michek, the current championship leader went on the race confident enough for a good result.
Bill got the holeshot and immediately put up enough margin between him and UFO-Racing team’s Milko Potisek who did a more strategic race following the Swiss rider as Milko can’t allow himself to lose any more ground in the championship standings.
Third place on the grid went to an FIM MX3 World Championship’s past contender, French Honda rider Christophe Martin after an interesting fight with Martin Michek who ended up fourth after being the second fastest in the morning practice sessions.
Austrian Michael Staufer on a KTM got fifth in front of Slovenian rider Saso Kragelj who was seventh for the most part of the race but getting sixth in the end after swapping positions with Antii Pyrhonen, who, along with Motoman’s Martin Zerava, can surely show their consistency in tomorrow’s tough races.
Best Italian riders were Daniele Bricca and Alessandro Valente in ninth and tenth positions respectively after one of the main favourites and current fifth in the MX3 World Championship standings crashed while on the pre-qualifying practice still ending up 24th for tomorrow’s grid.
Julien Bill : “It’s really hot today and I just want to keep the energy for tomorrow. I got the holeshot today which was nice as I think I didn’t have a single one since the season started. The track can be very slippery as it’s very hard underneath and if we go off the line it is muddy or really hard so it’s difficult to pass. I’m happy with my race today and I can push further for tomorrow if I need.”
Milko Potisek : “The two practice sessions were difficult as I couldn’t find the best lines so I was a bit stiff on the bike and didn’t play much. As there was no point battling with Julien today I just followed him during the race and checked on his lines. I’m going to have a good rest today to be in my best shape for tomorrow.”
Christophe Martin : “There’s a good level here with Bill and Potisek leading the Championship. It’s the only MX3 round I’m doing and I’m going for the win tomorrow. I’m doing the Supercross series on an Italian team so it’s close for me. I’ve been on this track before; I was here I think in 2002 for the GP and although it was different at the time I still like it.”
MX3 Qualifying Race top-ten : 1. Julien Bill (SWI, Honda), 24:08.452; ; 2. Milko Potisek (FRA, Honda), +0:10.781; 3. Christophe Martin (FRA, Honda), +0:12.321; 4. Martin Michek (CZE, KTM), +0:13.629; 5. Michael Staufer (AUT, KTM), +0:30.905; 6. Saso Kragelj (SLO, Yamaha), +0:38.344; 7. Antti Pyrhonen (FIN, Honda), +0:43.521; 8. Martin Zerava (CZE, Honda), +0:46.288; 9. Daniele Bricca (ITA, Honda), +0:59.345; 10. Alessandro Valente (ITA, Suzuki), +1:16.294