Monday
Jun182018

TrialGP Andorra

Bou Bounces Back at TrialGP Andorra For 99th World Championship Win

Click to view larger image of Toni Bou's 99th win ties him with British legend Dougie Lampkin.
Toni Bou's 99th win ties him with British legend Dougie Lampkin.



Toni Bou held his nerve to take victory at TrialGP Andorra, round three of the 2018 FIM Trial World Championship, following a tense four-way battle at altitude in the Pyrenees principality.

With the majority of sections plotted on the almost sheer, rocky hillside just outside Sant Julia de Loria where the Repsol Honda rider now calls home, the Trial called for courage and commitment in equal measure and at the end of the day it was the defending eleven-time FIM Trial World Champion who kept his cool in sweltering conditions.

The result ties him with British legend Dougie Lampkin on ninety-nine TrialGP victories and paves the way for a possible record-breaking one hundredth win at TrialGP Portugal in one week's time.

"The feeling is incredible because in Andorra it is always very difficult for me and today I think it's the best I've ridden this year," said Bou. "I made some little mistakes on the first lap, but I finally made sure of the win in the last section."


Following a close opening lap it was Bou who led on ten from his fellow Spaniards Albert Cabestany and Gas Gas' Jaime Busto who were tied on eleven with Jeroni Fajardo a further three marks off the pace.

After sharing the wins at TrialGP Japan last time out, both Fajardo and Busto knew victory would hand them the championship lead which only added to the tension.

The entire fourteen-rider field collected maximums on section twelve at their first attempt so it was modified for lap two. Bou needed a steadying dab here the second time around while Fajardo sailed through clean, but both Cabestany and Busto collected fives.

 


Click to view larger image of Bou was joined on the podium by previous round winner Jamie Busto and Adam Raga. Bou was joined on the podium by previous round winner Jamie Busto and Adam Raga.



The Trial was ultimately won and lost on the very last section of the event, the man-made hazard comprising huge boulders and giant logs in the town's main street that was used for Saturday's qualification session.

Fajardo arrived here on a total of fifteen, one ahead of Bou, with Cabestany on eighteen and Busto out of contention on twenty-four. With his second victory of the 2018 campaign in his grasp, Fajardo - whose sole TrialGP win up until this season had come in Andorra in 2009 - collected a shock maximum on what was a relatively simple section.

With Bou and Cabestany both nailing inch-perfect rides it meant victory went to Bou from Cabestany by two marks with Fajardo slipping to third on a total of twenty.

"I am very happy with this victory here in Andorra. It's been a tough weekend, with lots of nerves and a lot of pressure, but we've finally won," Bou said.

"Today I felt very good on the bike and my back did not bother me, which is very positive to be able to continue improving like that. This is a very important victory both for the championship and for my morale. To reach victory number ninety-nine is impressive and now we have to work to achieve one hundred victories. I keep saying that this will be a very complicated year for me but we will continue fighting," Bou concluded.

Busto was next on twenty-four before a five-mark gap to his compatriot Adam Raga - TRRS who won in Andorra last year, but never really looked comfortable after a shaky first lap.

Spain's Jorge Casales was the next rider home on a distant forty-six, one mark ahead of British rider James Dabill.

Miquel Gelabert from Spain, Scorpa mounted Frenchman Benoit Bincaz and Britain's Jack Price rounded out the top ten.

The result hands Bou a seven-point lead over Fajardo with Busto a further two points behind as the series approaches the halfway mark.

The 2018 TrialGP series continues in Portugal next weekend.

 

Monday
Jun182018

Giacomo Redondi California Dreaming

Giacomo Redondi in "Chase the dream" by Davide Derocchi

Sunday
Jun172018

Cairoli goes 1-1 in Italy

Antonio "King" Cairoli once again proved what experience means as he went 1-1 to close down the MXGP points lead by Jeffrey Herlings to just 12 points going into the two GP’s in Indonesia in two weeks’ time. The nine-time world champion made the most of the DNS of Herlings (out due to injury) in Italy and also picked up his 85th Grand Prix victory and his second of the season.

It was Cairoli of old as he showed the competition how to race the deep sand, and like he has done so many times before, when the season gets into the serious half, he starts to put the pressure on.

"Yes," Cairoli said. "It was a good race again just a small mistake in the second moto, I stalled the bike and crashed, too high in the gears, I tried to ride smooth, and yesterday I used a lot of energy and I was a bit tired. It was good for the championship. I wanted to put a gap in the second moto and was pushing and I fell, but I know this track is tough an its hot and I tried to come back. Tim was strong, but I passed him."

Second overall was Gautier Paulin 4-3 and third Max Anstie with 3-4. The two Husqvarna riders looking to try and climb up the points ladder.

"Actually," Paulin said. "To be honest it was hot and rough and I liked it. I was feeling good, two bad starts and close to crashing in both motos, but I came back really strong, and to finish second on the podiums is good. You need to dig deep an I want to congraulate my team-mate being on the podium."

"I know," Anstie said. "It is awesome to be back up here and worse start of the season I have had. Coming into the year and literally bang, bang, bang, but its not to be up here and be in the race. I want to give it up to the people around my, James Dobb is here trying to help me out and the team has done a great job.

Paulin.jpg#asset:8350

Kevin Strijbos led the second MXGP moto early, then Cairoli and Desalle, then came Coldenhoff, Gajser, Lupino, Nagl, Febvre, Monticelli, Paulin, Anstie, Simpson, Seewer, Waters, and Irwin 15th. Cairoli quickly into the lead, and Strijbos holding off Desalle for second. Waters quickly into 12th place.

Gajser moved past Coldenhoff, who dropped back to 8th place, and Nagl from seventh to fifth place. After a lap the lead was 2.5 for Cairoli, followed by Strijbos, Gajser, Desalle, Nagl, Paulin, Febvre, Coldenhoff, Anstie and Monticelli. Waters down and way back in 27th place.

Cairoli made a small mistake, crashed and dropped back to fourth, and Coldenhoff continued to have trouble as he dropped back to ninth and the Brits struggling with Anstie ninth, Simpson 16th and Searle 17th.

Strijbos in the lead and once again putting in a solid ride in the sand. Strijbos of course won at Lommel a few years ago. Cairoli quickly into third and hunting down Strijbos and Gajser.

Gajser went past Strijbos for the lead and Cairoli was also onto the Belgian veteran and on lap four went into second place. Cairoli on fire as he put a lot of pressure on Gajser.

After four laps the top ten was Gajser, Cairoli, Strijbos, Paulin, Nagl, Febvre, Anstie, Desalle, Seewer and Van Horebeek.

Cairoli moved into the lead and just took off, ala Herlings the last few months. The Italian looking to pull back the points lead by Herlings even more. Desalle down hard in the whoops and nearly hit by Seewer, and way back now in 16th position.

Waters out of the race, and after seven laps the top ten was Cairoli, Gajser, Strijbos, Paulin, Febvre, Anstie, Seewer, Nagl, Van Horebeek, and Coldenhoff.

Cairoli wins the moto, and the Grand Prix.

MXGP - Grand Prix Race 2 - Classification

1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 34:38.105; 2. Tim Gajser (SLO, Honda), +0:03.560; 3. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Husqvarna), +0:08.496; 4. Max Anstie (GBR, Husqvarna), +0:16.600; 5. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Yamaha), +0:19.628; 6. Romain Febvre (FRA, Yamaha), +0:32.708; 7. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, KTM), +0:35.614; 8. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, Yamaha), +0:46.022; 9. Maximilian Nagl (GER, TM), +0:52.311; 10. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Suzuki), +1:01.851; 11. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, KTM), +1:04.561; 12. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Kawasaki), +1:05.134; 13. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +1:09.592; 14. Valentin Guillod (SUI, KTM), +1:16.511; 15. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), +1:38.009; 16. Graeme Irwin (GBR, KTM), +1:40.526; 17. Tanel Leok (EST, Husqvarna), -1 lap(s); 18. Erki Kahro (EST, KTM), -1 lap(s); 19. Shaun Simpson (GBR, Yamaha), -1 lap(s); 20. Clement Desalle (BEL, Kawasaki), -
Sunday
Jun172018

MXGP of Lombardia 2018

Highlights

Sunday
Jun172018

Antonio Cairoli - interview

Antonio Cairoli is a very smart motocross rider, pushing his limits, but seemingly not daring to go beyond those limits. In battle with current red plate owner in the MXGP class Jeffrey Herlings, those limits can’t be reached as the Dutchman has been too good, but now in injury, the Italian is looking like he is the winner in the whole 2018 battle, at least for now.

Of course the outcome of the 2018 MXGP championship is just at the half way mark, and Herlings will be coming back to try and grab his first 450 championship. I wouldn't bet against either man at this stage, and that is what makes this years MXGP championship so amazing.

We caught up with him and asked him about those battles and his GP victory, his qualification race win yesterday and the injury to Jeffrey Herlings.

MXlarge: Antonio, how did it feel to win today?

Cairoli: It was a good race again just a small mistake in the second moto, I stalled the bike and crashed, too high in the gears, I tried to ride smooth, and yesterday I used a lot of energy and I was a bit tired. It was good for the championship. I wanted to put a gap in the second moto and was pushing and I fell, but I know this track is tough an its hot and I tried to come back. Tim was strong, but I passed him.

MXlarge: What about that first moto?

Cairoli: The goal is to make a win and make up some points. Unfortunately, Jeffrey is not here, and I hope he can get better soon and we can have some battles in the future. Yes, for sure, yesterday was difficult with the bad start and I wanted to be top ten from the start and I had a good start. I am really happy with this win.”

MXlarge: Not the start to the weekend you would have wanted in the Saturday qualification race, but you still showed you had to speed to come through and make a lot of passes.

Cairoli: The start is important, but not too much on this track, but I don’t need to crash twice in the first lap, and this wasn’t going to happen on Sunday. I try and get good points for the championship.

MXlarge: It is a track that is good for making different lines and then you are able to pass.

Cairoli: Yes, of course, that is nice about a track like this. Track like this, or Argentina, you can really come through the pack with technique and stay out of trouble and some tracks you really need to make contact to pass, so I like tracks like this one. I also like the hot weather, because for some riders it isn’t common for them, and I really like the hot weather. My condition is good.

MXlarge: Obviously we got the news this week that Jeffrey injured himself. How do you see that, maybe disappointed because you both prove to improve your levels against each other, but it does open the door for you a little?

Cairoli: I know, one thing for sure, the level we were racing is on the limit, and even in training you need to push a lot, really hard. It could happen to him, it could happen to me. When you push so hard like this, it is easy to make a small mistake that can cost you an injury. We look forward for myself, stay away from injury and be consistent all season and build a better condition. What I see I miss some laps at the end of the moto with consistency and that is what I am building for.

MXlarge: You mentioned in the press conference that you don’t think about the championship, but does this make you think more, like an advantage now?

Cairoli: I mean it is a good opportunity to come closer in the points, that is clear, but I mean, I like to fight with him, and beat him and that is of course what I am working for. The speed when we are battling is high and we pull a big gap on the rest, doesn’t matter if it is sand or hard pack. I just want to build my speed and be consistent, and what I see I need the last five minutes, when he is strong, I need to work on that and I hope we have more battles in the future.

MXlarge: We head to Indonesia, and I know you like these races. What are you looking forward to?

Cairoli: I like to race far away from home and also the hot weather I like. I hope the tracks are nice, this is a bit scary, because it is so far-away, and we never know what we might get, but I am hoping Youthstream are trying to make a good track for us. I am pretty sure the track will be nice, and we will have good battles.

Sunday
Jun172018

Motocross track coming to southwest Minnesota

Dale Ackermann displays the motocross trophies he earned during the 2017 racing season with his bike in front of Worthington Sports Center in Worthington. The Round Lake farmer has the green light to construct his own race track in Jackson County. (Alyssa Sobotka / The Globe)

 

LAKEFIELD — A Round Lake farmer revved up on a new life outlook and geared for a different, faster pace is hoping to revive local interest in and opportunities for motocross racing.

If repurposing an abandoned gravel pit stays on track, Dale Ackermann will host his first motocross race on his new dirt bike track and campground south of Lakefield in late summer or early fall.

“I want to bring something to the community that (my friends and I) didn’t have (growing up),” said the 55-year-old racing fanatic.

The future American Motorcycle Association-sanctioned District 23 state motocross track will be located approximately six miles south of Lakefield in the southwest corner of Section 32 in Hunter Township. The three-quarters to a mile-long track will allow motocross racers from across the state to compete and earn points in a variety of classes.

Once the track is complete, Ackermann plans to host nine to 12 racing events throughout the competitive season, June through September.  

“My goal is to have something every other week,” Ackermann said.  

While Ackermann is passionate about motocross, he’s also enthused about creating a family-oriented destination in southwest Minnesota, including amenities for those who aren’t interested in the sport.

There will be a 10-acre campsite for self-contained campers. A mini-golf course, bicycle track and sand volleyball court will also be available.

“Whatever the community wants to participate in, I want to provide,” he said.  

The site will adopt the name Diamond Park, which incorporates a nickname Ackermann was affectionately given by the “young bucks” within the past five years after returning to racing himself.

“If someone crashed, I would stop and help them get the bike off of them and I got popular by doing that,” he said, explaining how he received the nickname “Diamond.”

“I didn’t care if I won or lost. I was out there to have fun.”

The campground will be considered primitive, as there will initially be no electricity or water hookups. Depending on how well the park is received, Ackermann may make campground upgrades in the future.

The Jackson County Planning Commission and Jackson County Board of Commissioners recently approved Ackermann’s conditional use permit request, with a handful of conditions. Some conditions include the presence of safety personnel during racing and other on-track activities, dust control, erosion control and on-track activities scheduled between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Ackermann guessed the park will employ about 15 individuals seasonally.

The construction of the track and park is initially being funded out of Ackermann’s back pocket, with promotional help from his inner circle of racers and Worthington Sports Center. Once complete, gate, racing and campground fees will be charged for general upkeep of the grounds.

He hopes the track will have a domino effect, and help boost business for local merchants as well as interest in a powersports program.

He also hopes it has a positive effect on the local economy, as he suspects Diamond Park visitors will make trips into surrounding towns for a variety of needs. The nearest AMA-sanctioned track is in Mankato.

Ackermann has toyed with the idea of constructing a racetrack on the gravel pit that sits on 64 acres of land for the past few years. The time to pull the trigger and turn the idea into a reality is now, he said.

After listening to his late mother Beatrice’s advice about to not work so hard as he cared for her throughout her battle with lung cancer, a recent health scare of his own eventually triggered Ackermann’s desire to hop on a bike again after an approximately 28-year hiatus from competitive racing.

“Mom kept telling me not to work so hard — life is too short,” he said of his mother, who passed in 2009. “Sure, I heard the words, but didn’t think too much of it until, around my 50th (birthday), doctors found a mass on my kidney.”

He was quick to go purchase a selection of adult “toys,” ranging from a dirt bike, camper, snowmobile and icehouse.

“With my health scare, I figured if I was going to die, I wanted to go have my fun,” Ackermann said.

A member of the 50-plus racing class for the past five years, the oldest racer in the immediate area has also been racing alongside the younger generation of racers, all while in ’70s and ’80s-style garb.

“I stuck out like a sore thumb,” Ackermann said, laughing as he reminisced on his first years back racing.

During last year’s season, Ackermann earned second place in the 40-year-old class, and fourth place in the 45 and 50-year-old classes.

Much like the way he dresses, Ackermann also prepares for his races much the same nearly 30 years later — thinking about his dad.

His late father, Allen, never attended a race, fearful of his son being injured, but he did give his son some advice each time on his way out the door.

“He told me, ‘If you want to win, hold the throttle open longer than everyone else’ and ‘You can’t pass ’em if you follow ’em,’” said Ackermann of his father, who died in 1989. “Every weekend on that starting line, I’m thinking about Dad.”

Ackermann admits he’s been having too much fun the last few years racing again, but as someone who is sick of farming, it’s now time to get the project complete.

“I’ve seen many farmers, friends, aunts and uncles that work until they’re 70 and dead the next year because they don’t have anything to do or their body is so deteriorated,” he said, explaining how he chooses to live instead.   

As far as Ackermann’s health goes, the future remains a mystery, as doctors continue to monitor the mass on his kidney. It’s remained the same size in recent years, and so long as it continues to remain stagnant, no severe action will be taken. If it does grow, he said, he and his doctors will have to determine their next course of action.

“I’m living every year as if I’m going to be dead next year,” he said.

 

Saturday
Jun162018

Qualifying Highlights MXGP of Lombardia

 

Thursday
Jun142018

David Knight for Weston

Weston Beach Race

 

Four-time FIM Enduro World Champion David Knight MBE will race this year’s HydroGarden Weston Beach Race on an SR75 2018 Suzuki RM-Z450.

Knighter, a multi-time winner on the Somerset sands, was runner-up in the solo race in 2017 and is confident that this new partnership with Geoff Walker’s SR75 Suzuki team will provide him with everything he needs to challenge for the win this time around.

“I’m very happy to be riding for the SR75 Suzuki team for Weston 2018,” he said. “I tested the all-new 2018 machine and knew it was the right bike to tackle the job on straight away which is very rare for me.

“I love the chassis and the motor as it’s a very easy bike to ride which is the most important thing for me along with reliability because Weston isn’t kind.

“I’ve known Geoff for years and, like myself, he leaves no stone unturned and runs a great team with amazing support from the crew at Suzuki GB and – most of all – he makes it fun which is what I really need out of a team so I can’t wait.”

Knighter has already taken delivery of his practice bike and won the Douglas Beach Race on his first outing last week. Meanwhile, team owner Geoff is preparing a full beach-race specification SR75 RM-Z450.

“To sign David is fantastic for us as a team and for Suzuki GB as a brand,” said Geoff. “I have worked and raced with David for years and it is great to have this legend as part of our programme. We are looking forward to having a lot of fun and putting in the work to enjoy every domestic and global adventure as we move forward with the development of the incredible RM-Z450.

“This bike is key to signing David as the man loved it from the first moment we fired it up. There are many exciting times ahead for SR75 Suzuki and, as always, we would like to thank Rob Cooper and the Suzuki GB crew who make it possible for all of us to enjoy our sport and show just how great their products are.”

Thursday
Jun142018

Jeffrey Herlings to Undergo Surgery and Miss MXGP of Italy

Jeffrey Herlings to Undergo Surgery and Miss MXGP of Italy

 


Click to view larger image of Herlings crashed while practicing at Berghem in Holland in prperation for this weekends MXGP of Italy. Photo: Ray Archer  
Herlings crashed while practicing at Berghem in Holland in prperation for this weekends MXGP of Italy. Photo: Ray Archer



KTM have confirmed that MXGP championship leader Jeffrey Herlings will need surgery for a broken collar bone sustained in a practice crash.

Herlings was practicing in his home of Holland for this weekends MXGP of Italy when the accident occured.

"MXGP FIM World Championship leader Jeffrey Herlings will have surgery to repair a break to his right collarbone after a crash while practicing at Berghem in Holland today," KTM stated.

"The 23 year old is scheduled for a procedure at renowned surgeon Dr Claes’ clinic in the next few hours to fix a fracture near a plate that was inserted for a previous injury. It is extremely likely that the winner of 8 from 10 Grands Prix this season will miss this weekend’s Lombardia round at Ottobiano in Italy but then has a two week break before the Grand Prix of Indonesia on July 1st."

No official time frame has been given for his return but with eight round wins under his belt and a healthy 62 point lead in the standings his hope of taking his maiden MXGP title still looks possible.

 


Click to view larger image of Jeffrey Herlings has a 63 point lead in the championship as he prepares for surgery today. He has a two week break before the MXGP of Indonesia. Photo: Ray Archer Jeffrey Herlings has a 63 point lead in the championship as he prepares for surgery today. He has a two week break before the MXGP of Indonesia. Photo: Ray Arche

Tuesday
Jun122018

Round 5 International Old Timers MX Series

 

The Sierra Old Timers 42 annual motocross was held June 9th and 10th and was also round five in the International Old Timers series.

Held at the Prairie City OHV Park on the Hangtown National track, the weather was just about perfect a little windy here and there but nothing to really complain about. It could have easily been 100 and no wind at all. And the good news about this weekend, the ambulance did not move at all for three days. However, that doesn’t mean there weren’t tip over’s or just plain get off’s there were but nobody left in the ambulance. 

The club ended up with a decent turnout considering once again Mammoth MX was scheduled for the following weekend, along with all the graduations, weddings etc. in June. Maybe it’s time for the club to look at moving the date.

This event always has a big turnout from out of State riders and I’m sure that has to do with; it’s Hangtown, just like we go to Glen Helen in SoCal or Washougal in Washington because these are they iconic tracks.

I saw a few great scraps between riders and I’m sure there were many more I didn’t see. The 50 class is and continues to be the biggest classes and as such the track layouts are evolving to accommodate those riders whose skill levels are greater than in years past. And that leaves a segment of us older riders whose skills are not that of a fifty year old, no matter how much we try to tell are selves differently. And as such some the current layouts are very challenging, I’ve quit trying to get better and push myself into trying to make that long double and any gap jumps are down carry right scary. So when a track has lips (Jump take off ramps) that send you way up in the air and are designed to help carry a rider over the jump all they do for those of us that don’t clear a jump like that is we fall out of the sky and hit the top of the jump hard and that hurts. So we have to adjust our riding styles to blend in with the newer younger riders tracks. So there are just some places you just have to be cautious about. Hopefully there’s enough of the in betweens you end up being able to get into a good rhythm on the track.