The Frenchman had posted eighth-fastest time during practice as mere fractions-of-a-second separated the first-dozen and he rode a clever opening lap in the Qualifying race to emerge top-five. Setting the fastest lap times amongst the leaderboard sextet throughout the final laps he eventually sealed fourth four laps from the finish after an intense duel.
Romain Febvre: “I had a good feeling with the track and the bike this morning; my position in the timed-practice session did not tell the story as the times were so close and I was only seven-tenths of a second from the second position. I totally missed the start in the Qualifying race; my concentration lapsed for a split-second and I was nearly last off-the-line. Thankfully I rode a great opening lap; passing many guys to come through to fifth. But then it was so difficult to pass Seewer; I tried various different lines to avoid the rocks off his rear wheel but couldn’t quite find a way past until he made a mistake. Anyway I will have a good place behind the gate tomorrow in fourth.”
KRT teammate Ben Watson moved forward determinedly from seventeenth to fourteenth during the first two laps before a couple of minor slips pushed him back to seventeenth at the finish. F&H Kawasaki Racing Team’s Jed Beaton advanced strongly from fifteenth to eleventh during the first three laps and was looking to move even higher until a high-side through the S-turn entering the start-straight pushed him back to an eventual twenty-third.
Big Van World MTX Kawasaki’s Mikkel Haarup raced impressively to a strong fourth place in Qualifying for the FIM World MX2 Motocross Championship. The Dane, just a third-of-a-second shy of the fastest practice time in fifth, shot out of the gate to round turn one third before he was temporarily squeezed back to eighth as racing lines crossed through the next few turns. He quickly regained his composure to pull back into the top-six and again showed his stamina and keen eye for lines to make two clever passes on his way to fourth, setting the fastest lap of the race on the way.
Mikkel Haarup:”„I knew already in practice that we have a really strong bike this weekend and I got a good start in Qualifying; I made a little mistake on the first lap which cost me some positions but I came back with some really nice passes to finish fourth so I’m ready and confident for tomorrow. I came up with the idea of an MH11 fan-page a few weeks ago and it has really taken off big; they were everywhere around the track today. It’s so nice to come round the track and see the fans and the big flags; I’m really excited when I see so many fans. “
F&H Kawasaki Racing Team’s Kevin Horgmo also gated top-ten and rode solidly to push forward to his eventual sixth three laps from the finish.
9MM Energy Drink BUD Racing Kawasaki’s Quentin Marc Prugnières raced to his maiden moto-podium in the FIM European EMX250 Championship as he charged impressively from a ninth-placed start to second at the finish of the first twenty-five-minute-plus-two-lap race. The teenager was into the top four within six minutes and two more stunning passes saw him take over second by half-distance. The race-long leader, unhindered by traffic, was already thirteen seconds clear at that stage but the French youngster had reduced the gap to less than six seconds by the time they received the chequered flag. The second moto will take place at 11.30am on Sunday morning as Quentin seeks his first overall podium, or even victory. BUD teammate Eddie Jay Wade did not start following a hefty crash during practice.
Quentin Marc Prugnières: “The timed practice session was not as good as I would have wished, but I finally got a decent start in the top-ten and was able to avoid the big crash in the second corner. Then I rode a strong race to finish second; it’s my first moto-podium in the EMX250 and now the goal is to stay focused tomorrow and to have fun on the track. It’s not an easy track but that also makes it interesting as there are several possible lines in many places; I like it."