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May 11, 2014 - 06:15 AM
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Strijbos Strong In Spanish MXGP Qualifying
Posted by: newsla on May 11, 2014 - 06:14 AM
Strijbos Strong In Spanish MXGP Qualifying

Sweltering temperatures blazed the first day of the Grand Prix of Spain at Talavera de la Reina around the hilly and scenic circuit southwest of Madrid as Kevin Strijbos produced an aggressive and quick performance on his factory Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MXGP RM-Z450 to seize third position in the MXGP Qualification Heat. Clement Desalle was fourth after enduring a stomach problem.


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The seventh round of the FIM Motocross World Championship saw the series heading to the flowing layout for the first time in 14 years and was thus a fresh challenge for the vast majority of the Grand Prix paddock. Incessant watering of the terrain meant varying levels of grip and created a difficult racing surface.

After adjusting his front suspension setting to cope with the harder ground and ruts, Strijbos made a mediocre start in the 20 minute and two-lap dash and chased down his team-mate as well as Jeremy Van Horebeek. Antonio Cairoli grabbed pole position but Strijbos rallied hard to pressurise Van Horebeek to the flag. Just behind, Desalle held second spot for the first half of the race but some stomach cramps since the morning forced him to relinquish two spots and ease his pace.

More hot weather is predicted for race day tomorrow but the forecast of more cloudy skies might bring respite from the sunshine.

Kevin Strijbos:

“It is difficult to pass out there. I like the track and it is old school and nice to ride but with the layout and the short straights it is hard to line-up a pass. I think I can be happy with my day. I wheelied a bit out of the gate as soon as I released the clutch but I made some positions at the beginning. I had some good lines and could push the whole race while putting some pressure on the guys in front of me. Third is good for tomorrow but I think you can get a good start from anywhere if you have a good jump. It will be a hard race with the heat tomorrow but I’m looking for the podium again.”

Clement Desalle:

“My riding is good and I feel fine on the bike but I’ve had a stomach problem since the morning and it wasn’t getting any better in the afternoon. I had a good lap-time in Timed Practice but it was just one lap! I did what I could in the Heat race but I felt like I was going to vomit. I managed fourth by the end and the position was not that important because you can make holeshots from anywhere here. I just hope I will feel better tomorrow. The track is nice but there are not many possibilities to pass if you are faster than the other guy.”

MXGP Qualification Heat result:

1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 24:36.272;
2. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, Yamaha), +0:15.857;
3. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki), +0:17.419;
4. Clement Desalle (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki), +0:26.272;
5. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:27.837;
6. Xavier Boog (FRA, Honda), +0:32.569;
7. Steven Frossard (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:34.814;
8. Rui Goncalves (POR, Yamaha), +0:36.162;
9. Shaun Simpson (GBR, KTM), +0:38.883;
10. Joel Roelants (BEL, Honda), +0:39.955;

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