The northern Italian province of Trentino hosted round five of the FIM World Motocross Championship today. Nestled at the base of the imposing Dolomite mountains, as always the stunning Ciclamino circuit produced some exciting racing and a tough challenge for both riders and machines.
In the MXGP class it was no surprise that Team HRC’s Tim Gajser once again showed great form with a Champion’s performance in both races. Great also to see Gajser’s teammate Mitch Evans showing positive signs of a return to form following a bad wrist injury in 2020 forcing him out of the entire 2021 season. Evans rode his CRF450R to third place in Saturday’s Qualifying Race, but struggled to find the same form on race-day, yet still delivered a much improved performance on this demanding circuit.
In race one, Gajser took his time and circulated in second place for half of the moto, riding calmly and smoothly. By the half way point it was go-time for Tim as he took over the lead and easily pulled away to win the race comfortably by over 3.5 seconds.
Mitch Evans and Honda 114 Motorsports’ Rubén Fernández finished the race in 10th and 11th positions; Evans on a comeback to full-fitness and Fernández nursing a thumb injury sustained at the last round in Portugal.
In MXGP Race two Gajser took over the lead on the first lap and won the race by over five seconds. Fernández had a better start in the second moto and battled hard to the end, eventually finishing the race in eighth to give the Spaniard eighth overall. Evans finished the race in ninth place after a poor start and battling back from 13th on lap one. The hardworking Australian finished the day in ninth overall, one point behind Fernández.
Gajser and Team HRC now lead the illustrious MXGP championship by 33 points and the next race will take place in Latvia on 24th April.
In the ever-competitive MX2 class the best showing Honda was once-again frenchman Stephen Rubini who struggled a little to deliver an effective start, giving himself a lot of work to do in the races.
Race one and Rubini rounded lap one in 13th place but battled hard throughout the moto to squeeze his way into ninth place at the finish.
Recovering from a hard crash in Portugal last weekend, Honda 114 Motorsports’ Norwegian rider Hakon Fredriksen had a tough ride in moto one, starting in 20th and finishing the race in the same position after briefly moving up to 16th on lap two.
MX2 race two and once again Rubini and Fredriksen with gave themselves some work to do - Rubini hitting lap one in ninth with Fredriksen down in 22nd. Rubini dropped to 11th in the early stages of the race, but made his way back to ninth at the finish to give him ninth overall. Meanwhile Fredriksen pushed hard to make it back from 22nd to 15th at the finish. 18th was Hakon’s overall today and he'll be hoping to reground and recover for the next round in Latvia in two weeks time.