My French Motocross Grand Prix by Tony Cairoli
Tony Cairoli is the defending World Motocross Champion of MX 1, and leading this year’s Championship points chase as well.
I just got back to Europe from the GP of the USA, and we were already on our way to the next MX GP of France. The traveling from the USA back to Europe went pretty well. Rui (Goncalves) and I decided to stay awake Sunday night after the GP of Glen Helen so we could go sleep at our normal ‘European’ time. But that wasn’t easy Anyway, I didn’t have much jet lag when I came home!
Thursday I traveled with my motor home to the track in Saint Jean d’Angely – we arrived in the evening. Friday was an easy day for me, just hanging around a bit in the paddock and enjoying the sun.
Saturday: The qualification heat went really well, I came out of the gate in second. Josh Coppins had the lead, and I could pass him when he made a small mistake. I ended up winning my second qualification heat of this season (the other was in Valkenswaard, Holland).
Saturday night it rained a lot. And it made the track pretty muddy. And AGAIN the track would have just one good line, so it would not be easy to pass during the racing for sure.
Sunday: In the first moto I took the important hole shot. Steve Ramon was in back of me and had some great lines! He passed me, but I could pass him back and could hold the lead and win the first moto!
In the second moto, I had a bad bad start : ( … but had the best three corners starting with the first one!! I passed a lot of riders in the corner up the hill … and managed to get up to fifth position by the end of the first lap!! I passed Davide Guarneri, and Anthony Boissiere was pushing in back of me! It was not that easy to find my rhythm, and Anthony was faster so he passed me. After a few laps though, I could pass him back!
In only two more laps I closed the gap on Clement Desalle, but it was not easy to pass him. I knew I had to pass him to win the GP, but it was risky, and Clement ended up finishing second behind moto winner David Philippaerts, while I was third.
David won the GP with same points as me! (We both had a first and a third for 45 points.) It’s never nice to ‘lose’ a GP win to someone with the same points, but at least it was an Italian on the highest step of the podium! GRANDE!
So, to recap the MX GP of France: Great crowd, two Italians on the podium, and two totally different weather conditions in two days!
Tony Cairoli 222
p.s. For my friend and team-mate #2 Max Nagl – Get well soon MAX!
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