Racing started today at the outstanding facilities of Beto Carrero with both MX1 and MX2 qualifying races. The grand stands of the Honda Grand Prix of Brazil were already almost full today and the warm Brazilian public enjoyed watching Antonio Cairoli and Jeffrey Herlings dominating their respective heats with superb authority.
MX1 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Cairoli started the day obtaining the best time lap of the pre-qualifying practice just some seconds before the session was finished. At the qualifying race, the Italian took the holeshot and he managed to keep the lead until the end. Cairoli admitted that he enjoyed racing today in Beto Carrero even if the track was a bit muddy as a consequence of the rain early in the morning.
Second of the qualifying race was Kawasaki Racing Team’s Paulin, who made a really good start, but he could not catch Cairoli and rode second from beginning to the end. However, his lap times were really good and he has high hopes for tomorrow.
Rockstar Energy Suzuki World’s Desalle did not start at the front with the top four riders, but he managed to catch Ferris, who was riding fourth, by the middle of the qualifying race and with two laps to go, the Belgian overtook Bobryshev and crossed the finish line third. Tomorrow, Desalle will have one of the best positions at the starting grid, so he might be able to fight for the overall victory tomorrow.
Honda World Motocross’ Bobryshev was back on the bike this morning, after having missed the Mexican Grand Prix last weekend due to some health problems. The Russian admitted that he is not 100% yet, but he was able to make a solid qualifying race, riding third most of the heat and crossing the finish line fourth.
The positive surprise of the MX1 qualifying race was the presence of Ice1Racing’s Ferris fighting for the top five positions of the heat. The Australian has been recovering from an injury and after today’s performance he seems to be fully fit to be one of the MX1 riders to take into account to finish at the top five positions. Today, he had an excellent start and he rode fourth during the first half of the heat, but he could not keep Desalle behind him and Ferris crossed the finish line in the fifth position.
Philippaerts, who made a mistake in one of table tops of the track during the qualifying race, finished sixth and he was followed by Barragán, who has made one of the best qualifying heats of the season. De Dycker made a mistake in the opening lap, but he moved from an initial fourteenth position up to the finial eighth place.
Boog did an incredible pre-qualifying heat and he obtained the best second time lap, but the French did not have a good start and he had to settle down with the ninth position. Gonçalves, who admitted that he had some problems with the tear-offs of his goggles during the heat, is still struggling with a painful thumb and groin injuries. The Portuguese managed to ride eighth during most of the first half of the qualifying race, but he finally crossed the finish line tenth.
Christophe Pourcel was only twentieth at today’s qualifying race, but he will have a second chance tomorrow to show his real potential to the Brazilian fans during the main event.
However, the bad news comes on the side of Frossard, who was not able to take part in the heat due to the heavy pain he is suffering in his right knee. The French rider will not take part in tomorrow’s races and he will try it again in two weeks time in Saint Jean d’Angely during his home Grand Prix.
Balbi was the best Brazilian of the MX1 qualifying race finishing nineteenth, followed by his compatriot Ramos. Garcia was only able to finish twenty-second.
MX1 Qualifying Race top ten : 1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 25:26.628; 2. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:08.686; 3. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), +0:15.269; 4. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:19.743; 5. Dean Ferris (AUS, Kawasaki), +0:34.051; 6. David Philippaerts (ITA, Yamaha), +0:36.228; 7. Jonathan Barragan (ESP, Honda), +0:37.878; 8. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), +0:39.581; 9. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:41.773; 10. Rui Goncalves (POR, Honda), +0:44.466;
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Herlings won his second qualifying race today with superb authority. The Dutch young rider was also the fastest in today’s pre-qualifying session and he actually crossed the finish line of the qualifying race with 25 seconds advantage over Searle, who was second. Herlings is now looking forward to taking part in tomorrow’s heats and increase his leadership over his pursuers.
The second position of the MX2 qualifying race was for Team Floride Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit’s Searle, who rode a solid moto keeping the second position from beginning to end. The British rider crossed the finish line quite behind Herlings, but he is confident for tomorrow’s races.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Van Horebeek did also a consistent race and he kept his initial third position until the chequered flag. The Belgian rode really comfortably in the third position without making mistakes and saving the energies for tomorrow’s races, where he will try to be again on the podium and keep the second position of the championship.
Monster Energy Yamaha’s Charlier proved once more that he is fully fit from his foot injury as he managed to finish fourth in the MX2 qualifying race. The French rider will have a really good starting position tomorrow for the main races, so he will have the change to show his talent on his Yamaha machine.
KTM Diga Racing’s Butrón did also a really good qualifying race and he crossed the finish line in the fifth position. The Spanish rider has admitted that he is feeling really comfortable with the new settings of the bike and he is willing to finish again in the top five after tomorrow’s races.
Nicholls and Petrov were sixth and seventh respectively and Guillod obtained one of his best results of the season finishing eighth in the qualifying race, after having started from an initial fourth position. Anstie was ninth and Coldenhoff completed the top ten.
Tixier and Roelants made a mistake in the qualifying race and finished twelfth and fourteenth respectively. The best-qualified Brazilian rider was Hector Assunçao in the seventeenth position.
MX2 Qualifying Race top ten : 1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 25:04.788; 2. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:25.795; 3. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, KTM), +0:42.730; 4. Christophe Charlier (FRA, Yamaha), +0:59.843; 5. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), +1:05.913; 6. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), +1:23.203; 7. Petar Petrov (BUL, Suzuki), +1:29.492; 8. Valentin Guillod (SUI, KTM), +1:35.827; 9. Max Anstie (GBR, Honda), +1:36.790; 10. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, KTM), +1:37.966;