It was a tough day at the office for Team HRC’s Ruben Fernandez and Tim Gajser as the duo finished seventh and 10th in the qualification race at the deep sand track of Lommel.
It was a tough day at the office for Team HRC’s Ruben Fernandez and Tim Gajser as the duo finished seventh and 10th in the qualification race at the deep sand track of Lommel. Knowing that this would be one of the hardest tests of the season, the pair acquitted themselves as much as possible, fighting until the very end to make sure they scored points at this MXGP of Flanders.
Fernandez favours a much loamier surface, similar to Portugal or where his won his GP this year in Argentina, while Gajser has been unable to practice too much sand-riding in his recovery from the broken femur he sustained in February. As a result, the pair were just slightly outside the top five in timed practice, making things a little harder off the starting gate but both riders were able to round the first bend in touch of the leaders.
Unfortunately, an early mistake from the #243 dropped him from sixth to 10th, and from there, it was just a case of putting his head down and minimising any more errors on a track that was causing problems throughout the field. Fernandez was just behind his teammate to begin with, and moved through into seventh by the third lap and then had a lonely race with big gaps in front and behind. That can sometimes be a difficult proposition, with no other riders to focus on, but the #70 kept plugging away and received the chequered flag in the same position.
The forecast for tomorrow has the potential for rain, which will make a difficult track even tougher, but both riders should be better prepared and a bit more comfortable each time they get on the track and will be hoping to be able to mix it up a bit further up the field in the two GP-scoring motos.