MXGP – Cairoli and Searle on top in Belgium

5 years ago

The sun was shining in Belgium on the weekend, and more than 18,000 people came to see the Motocross Battle of the Ardennes, where Antonio Cairoli and Tommy Searle were the clear dominants. The track hosted today one of the best battles of the season in both MX1 and MX2 classes and it was partly thanks to the outstanding conditions of the track.

You can also see the video recap of the event.


Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antonio Cairoli won both heats of the Belgian Grand Prix and obtained his fourth GP win of the season, which makes his personal record go up until 47 victories, only three away from Joël Robert. In the first moto, Cairoli managed to have a good start and pushed hard to open the gap with his pursuers already from the beginning. In the second heat, the Italian went on his KTM full of confidence, and even if he could not lead the race from the beginning, by lap eight he was already at the front and succeeded to cross the finish line first and went out with the overall victory.

The second step of the podium was for home rider, Clement Desalle, after being third in both motos. In the first race the Belgian rider had a small crash and lost some seconds with the leading group, but he then gave his best and managed to finish third. In the second heat the Rockstar Energy Suzuki World rider led the race during four laps, but he could not keep the rhythm of his pursuers. Desalle was a bit disappointed for not having been able to hand the overall victory to the warm and enthusiastic crowd present at Bastogne, but in the end he admitted that he felt really satisfied for having raced on his home soil with so much support from the crowd.

CP377 Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit’s Christophe Pourcel was third on the podium today after finishing fifth and second in the races. The first heat was tough for the French rider because he did not have a good start, and even if he tried to move up quickly, he found difficulties to overtake the riders in front of him; in the end Pourcel was able to finish fifth. The French rider took the holeshot of the second race, but he had to settle down with third position, which made him be on the podium.

Home rider Kevin Strijbos did one of his best Grand Prix of the season after the Brazilian Grand Prix. The HM Plant KTM UK rider did two really good starts, especially in the first moto, and he managed to finish fourth in both heats. Strijbos was fourth overall in the Grand Prix and he missed the podium for just two points.

Completing the top five was Kawasaki Racing Team’s Gautier Paulin, who managed to finish second in the first moto, but he was only ninth in the second one. The French rider had a difficult first race, crashing at the beginning of the heat and having to race with a plastic stuck in his rear wheel. Despite the difficulties he faced during the first moto, Paulin admitted that he felt really good and he even clinched his best lap time in the last lap. The second race was a completely different story for Paulin, who had another small crash in the beginning and could not catch the leading riders.

Ken De Dycker did an incredible race this weekend even having finished sixth overall. The Belgian rider crashed with Bobryshev in the first corner of the first race and had to push really hard from the very last position to finish ninth. In the second heat he could not have a good start either and had to settle down with the sixth position.

Tanel Leok proved that he is feeling much better by finishing in the seventh overall position, followed by Xavier Boog and Sebastien Pourcel. The tenth place was for David Philippaerts, who struggled a lot during the whole weekend to find the rhythm and speed to ride at the front.

Evgeny Bobryshev did a solid second moto and finished fifth, but he got another DNF in the first one. The Russian got the front disk of his Honda machine broken due to the crash in the first corner with De Dycker, and even if he tried to finish the race, Bobryshev had to surrender and enter the pitlane. His teammate Rui Gonçalves finished in a solid fifteenth position taking into account that he raced with a broken rib from the crash he suffered yesterday during the qualifying time practice.

MX1 Race 1 top ten:

1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 40:20.568;
2. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:02.127;
3. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), +0:04.944;
4. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, KTM), +0:31.016;
5. Christophe Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:36.324;
6. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:37.570;
7. David Philippaerts (ITA, Yamaha), +0:43.854;
8. Sebastien Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:50.218;
9. Tanel Leok (EST, Suzuki), +0:51.123;
10. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), +0:53.502;

MX1 Race 2 top ten:

1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 40:19.194;
2. Christophe Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:04.597;
3. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), +0:09.786;
4. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, KTM), +0:10.625;
5. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:36.754;
6. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), +0:42.862;
7. Tanel Leok (EST, Suzuki), +0:44.952;
8. Davide Guarneri (ITA, KTM), +0:52.345;
9. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:53.004;
10. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:55.722;

MX1 Overall top ten:

1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 50 points;
2. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), 40 p.;
3. Christophe Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), 38 p.;
4. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, KTM), 36 p.;
5. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), 34 p.;
6. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), 26 p.;
7. Tanel Leok (EST, Suzuki), 26 p.;
8. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), 26 p.;
9. Sebastien Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), 23 p.;
10. David Philippaerts (ITA, Yamaha), 22 p.;

MX1 Championship top ten:

1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 345 points;
2. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), 298 p.;
3. Christophe Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), 292 p.;
4. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), 289 p.;
5. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), 237 p.;
6. David Philippaerts (ITA, Yamaha), 212 p.;
7. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), 211 p.;
8. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, KTM), 207 p.;
9. Rui Goncalves (POR, Honda), 169 p.;
10. Tanel Leok (EST, Suzuki), 168 p.;


Team Floride Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit’s Tommy Searle achieved his main goal this weekend and he was on the first step of the podium thanks to his 2-1 result. In the first race he had a really good start, but he made a mistake in the opening lap and Herlings was able to open the gap. However, Searle started finding really good lines and he caught the Dutch rider, but he then made another mistake and had to settle down with the second place. The second race was perfect from beginning to end, and Searle could battle with Herlings and proved that he has the potential to beat him.

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jeffrey Herlings was on the second step of the podium being tight in points with Searle. The current leader of the series was satisfied with his performance this weekend even not being the overall winner. Herlings did not lose or win any points this weekend and he keeps on leading the series with 24-point advantage over Searle.

Third on the podium was his teammate Jeremy Van Horebeek thanks to his consistent performance in today’s races, finishing third in both of them. The Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider admitted that the track was too fast for him and this is why he could not catch the leaders, but he feels really comfortable with himself and he is convinced that his moment will come sooner or later.

Joel Roelants was fourth overall in his home Grand Prix thanks to his 4-5 result. The Team Floride Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit rider is feeling much better now and a proof of that is that even starting around the tenth position, he is able to keep the rhythm high and give chase to the front group.

Monster Energy Yamaha’s Arnaud Tonus obtained his best result of the season being fifth overall on his 21st anniversary. The Swiss rider did not have a good start in the first race and had to fight from the initial 29th position to cross the finish line seventh. In the second moto Tonus was able to start with the top five riders and he rode a consistent race and he ended fourth, position which made him finish fifth overall of the Belgian Grand Prix.

It was a solid weekend for Jordi Tixier, who ended sixth overall of the Grand Prix. Jake Nicholls rode really well this weekend, especially in the first heat where he could finish fifth. The British rider was eighth in the second race and he ended seventh overall in the Grand Prix.

Eighth was Jose Butron and Alessandro Lupino and Mel Pocock completed the top ten.

It was a weekend to forget for Max Anstie, who got two DNF’s due to several problems with his bike. In the first heat his Honda machine had an electric problem and in the second one the British rider felt like there was something wrong in the suspensions of his bike and he decided to enter in the pitlane because he felt it was to risky to stay in the race with such mechanical problem.

Christophe Charlier did not take part in today’s races, but he hopes to be back in Sweden in two weeks time.

MX2 Race 1 top ten:

1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 39:30.417;
2. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:11.415;
3. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, KTM), +0:16.442;
4. Joel Roelants (BEL, Kawasaki), +0:20.759;
5. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), +1:05.664;
6. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), +1:10.608;
7. Arnaud Tonus (SUI, Yamaha), +1:21.703;
8. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), +1:25.784;
9. Mel Pocock (GBR, Yamaha), +1:33.831;
10. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Husqvarna), +1:42.311;

MX2 Race 2 top ten:

1. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), 39:20.529;
2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:13.020;
3. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, KTM), +0:44.315;
4. Arnaud Tonus (SUI, Yamaha), +0:50.890;
5. Joel Roelants (BEL, Kawasaki), +0:51.762;
6. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), +1:21.534;
7. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), +1:28.099;
8. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), +1:41.428;
9. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Husqvarna), +1:45.612;
10. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), +1:46.020;

MX2 Overall top ten:

1. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), 47 points;
2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 47 p.;
3. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, KTM), 40 p.;
4. Joel Roelants (BEL, Kawasaki), 34 p.;
5. Arnaud Tonus (SUI, Yamaha), 32 p.;
6. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), 30 p.;
7. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), 29 p.;
8. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), 24 p.;
9. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Husqvarna), 23 p.;
10. Mel Pocock (GBR, Yamaha), 21 p.;

MX2 Championship top ten:

1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 364 points;
2. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), 340 p.;
3. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, KTM), 308 p.;
4. Joel Roelants (BEL, Kawasaki), 238 p.;
5. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), 217 p.;
6. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), 204 p.;
7. Max Anstie (GBR, Honda), 191 p.;
8. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Husqvarna), 152 p.;
9. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), 150 p.;
10. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), 139 p.;

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