Competing at the Sugo round of the Japanese National Motocross Championship, Honda World MX team riders Rui GonÃ§alves and Evgeny Bobryshev had their first opportunity to familiarise themselves with the machinery they will be using to contest the 2012 MX1 World Motocross Championships – and they would start just as they mean to go on, putting their Honda CRF450R machines on the top steps of the podium.
After just a half day with the new bike, prior to the Sugo race, Rui GonÃƒÂ§alves and Evgeny Bobryshev ventured into the competitive environment – the ideal scenario to put the new machine through its paces. GonÃƒÂ§alves would earn overall glory on the day with two solid performances. After finishing third in the first moto, he would go on to win the second in dominant style – earning himself the overall victory. Team-mate Bobryshev would post a consistent performance, finishing second in both heats, despite a few small mistakes. Home star Narita-san would provide the stiffest competition, taking the win in the first moto before both Honda World Motocross riders really found their stride and eclipsed him in the second running.
The Sugo race came at the beginning of a five-day testing programme in Japan for the Honda World Motocross Team. Engineers from the team are working in close unison with engineers from Honda Japan as they evaluate the new prototype Honda CRF450R that will be used in the 2012 MX1 World Championship season.
Rui GonÃƒÂ§alves, Honda World Motocross: “It feels good to take the win on my first outing with the new bike. It was the first time I have ridden properly since the Motocross of Nations – as I have only been practicing since then, so I was riding a bit tight at first. But in the second moto I let things flow a bit more and got the result. We are all working really hard out here to evaluate the new package and so far things are going really well.”
Evgeny Bobryshev, Honda World Motocross: “Honestly my racing performance was not so good. I got arm-pump in the first race and had a few problems in the second, twisting my knee, twice! The racing schedule is pretty tight in the Japanese championship and you don’t really have time to bed yourself in properly. Despite this it was real important to test the new bike and we are all really happy with what we have; it is something special. Over the next few days we will learn even more about it.”
Roger Harvey, Off-road Manager, Honda Motor Europe: “We are pretty happy with the result from this event, but to be honest it was not all about results. We wanted to get some time under our belts with the new bike and we have started things off on the right foot. The next few days of testing will be equally as important and with help from Honda Japan, we are positive that we will find a strong direction with the new package.”
Photo credits: Taku Nagami
World Honda Motocross on top at Sugo, Japan MX. Rui Goncalves first, Evgeny Bobryshev second
Evgeny Bobryshev on the new 2012 Honda CRF450R
The winner in Japan – Rui Goncalves
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