You remember. The 2012 Motocross of Nations. Lommel, Belgium.
Team USA was heavily favored coming into the event, to be held at the world famous Lommel sand track.
But the rest of the world had something to say about the matter. First, world champions Tony Cairoli and Jeffrey Herlings proved no one can ride the relentless & ever changing sand of Lommel like they can.
And, as German Team Manager Mr. Nagl had said all week “My boys can do it!” And his boys did it – winning the 2012 Motocross of Nations!
This article was originally published the day of the event, September 30, 2012.
Team Germany – Max Nagl, Kenny Roczen, and Marcus Schiffer, have won the 2012 FIM Monster Energy Motocross of Nations today in Lommel, Belgium. Top individual honors go to World Motocross Champion of MX1, Tony Cairoli.
The Motocross of Nations runs three motos – MX1 & MX2, MX2 & Open, and MX1 & Open as the finale.
Second overall today, Team Belgium – Clement Desalle, Jeremy van Horebeek, and Ken de Dycker.
Each year the “Nations” is held in a different country. The thing that made this year’s race unique in Belgium – the sand of Lommel. It’s deep, soft, rough, and relentless. Next year the Nations will be held in Germany.
The scoring at the Nations takes the best five out of six finishes for each team.
Earlier in the day …
Sunrise in Belgium. Not a cloud in the sky. Yesterday’s Qualification races had a packed house, the circuit jammed with spectators. At 7:30am this morning, the line of people waiting to get in is already huge.
And there is great anticipation in the air, because of the number of teams that feel they have a chance win the coveted Chamberlain Trophy. With USA struggling yesterday, that has given an even further boost to those teams.
The top contenders, in order of Qualifying yesterday – Germany, Belgium, Italy, Netherlands, France, Great Britain, and USA. And it’s the one time a year that the World Champions get to battle with America’s best – Cairoli and Herlings against Barcia, Baggett, and Dungey. Add in Belgium’s strong team of Desalle, van Horebeek and de Dycker. France’s Boog, Paulin and Musquin. Germany’s Roczen, Nagl and Schiffer. It’s going to be an exciting day!
First moto is MX1 and MX2 – Tony Cairoli (Italy) dominated. He led every lap. Gautier Paulin (France) second. Germany is leading country right now after this first race (Nagl and Roczen raced). USA had problems – Dungey crashed. Baggett crashed. Dungey gets seventh. Baggett gets 15th.
Race 2 – MX2 and Open. And Jeffrey Herlings destroyed this race – led every lap as did Cairoli in the first moto. The Sand King won by a large margin. Meanwhile, Team USA has problems again. Justin Barcia was dicing with Ken de Dycker early on, and the two literally collided – you could hear the noise their bikes made hitting each other. It left Barcia on the ground, and de Dycker with one less rider to worry about.
Belgium had some tough luck as well – Jeremy van Horebeek went out of the race early.
Baggett was working his way up for the USA, finishing sixth. Barcia recovered from his crash and was in the top five most of the race – until the very end – bad luck for the USA as Barcia pulls into pit lane – broken front wheel. Germany’s Roczen takes fourth. Teammate Marcus Schiffer seventh.
The final race of the day – MX1 and Open. And the early leader is … Tony Cairoli. Herlings is back in 16th. For USA, the first lap has Dungey in second, and Barcia in third. Next lap, Dungey crashes. HIt some big bumps wrong, and went thru the fencing on his left hand side of the track.
The track is so rough. Lap times are around 10 seconds per lap slower than earlier in the day for the fastest riders. Cairoli leads … but sand master Herlings has moved into second. It’s been a masterful day for the two world motocross champions (MX1 and MX2) and the Red Bull KTM squad.
With just a few laps to go, it’s quite fitting that individual honors on the day will come down to Cairoli and Herlings. Both riding the KTM 350. Cairoli is leading, but Herlings has closed up right behind him.
The running order for the title right now is Germany first, Belgium second, and USA third. Amazing considering all the problems both Belgium and America have had today.
Cairoli has done it. He’s won this moto, and top individual honors on the day. Herlings finishes second, and Justin Barcia third. Germany’s Max Nagl finishes seventh, Schiffer 14th to seal the deal for Team Germany.
Final Team Results – 2012 FIM Monster Energy Motocross of Nations – Lommel, Belgium
- Germany – Nagl, Roczen, Schiffer – 25 points
- Belgium – Desalle, van Horebeek, de Dycker – 29 points
- USA – Dungey, Baggett, Barcia – 39 points
- The Netherlands – De Reuver, Coldenhoff, Herlings – 44 points
- Italy – Cairoli, Lupino, Guarneri – 45 points
- France – Paulin, Musquin, Boog – 47 points
- Estonia – 56
- Great Britain – 56
- Portugal – 80
- Australia – 83
- MX1 winner – Tony Cairoli
- MX2 winner – Ken Roczen
- Open winner – Jeffrey Herlings
Blake Baggett had some good quotes at the post race press conference. “The only place in the USA with sand like this in on public beaches. I’ve never ridden on anything like this before. And hats off to Germany and Belgium and Cairoli and Herlings – those guys are animals.”
USA Team Manager Roger De Coster had a good quote afterwards as well “Thanks to Tony Cairoli and Jeffrey Herlings for the riding lessons. And congratulations to Team Germany and Belgium.”
Click on the photos below to see the larger images from today’s Motocross of Nations
Team USA after the racing was done
Team Germany – Marcus Schiffer, Max Nagl, and Ken Roczen – 2012 Champions