Sunday 16th December: Mini & MX open. There is some rain damage on the MX and it will be wet and slippery in some places but it is ride able. Free sausage sizzle at 12.00.

Paulin & Herlings Dominate

Bulgarian GP 2013 Qualifying

maddix park mx

www.fullnoise.com.au  Motocross News

The weather respected the MXGP riders today for the Bulgarian Grand Prix as Gautier Paulin and Jeffrey Herlings led the way around the hard packed Sevlievo circuit to take the victories in the MX1 and MX2 qualifying respectively.

Click here for the video clips of the qualifying:  MX1    MX2.

Kawasaki Racing Team’s Gautier Paulin (above) started the day clocking the fastest lap time in the pre-qualifying session and he succeeded in having a good start and led the race from the beginning. The French rider admitted after the race that he feels really comfortable with the settings of his bike and he is now more consistent in his starts, so he is now ready to be fighting for the victory at every Grand Prix starting tomorrow.


The second position of the qualifying race went to Rockstar Energy Suzuki World’s Kevin Strijbos (left) who went from eighth to second. The Belgian rider felt really good on his Suzuki, especially after the team had made some changes to the settings and is now looking for his first podium for the year.

"I felt good today. The track is pretty easy and there aren't many bumps. I had a good jump at the start of the qualification race but was too slow for the first turn," Strijbos explained.

"Some people passed me and I think I was 10th on the first lap. I had some good lines and I could overtake where I wanted. It was a good race. We changed the engine a little bit after practice to gain a bit more power and I felt it later on. It helped everywhere and suited a bit more my style of riding. I was passing on the long straights and I could feel it was quicker. I'm happy with second place and will concentrate on a good start tomorrow. I don't want to talk it up too much but we will try to keep going in this direction and feel confident for the races."

CLS MX1 Kawasaki Monster Energy Pro Circuit’s Tommy Searle had a great qualifying race today at Sevlievo also. The British rider started second and hold the position comfortably until he made a small mistake at the upper part of the track and Strijbos closed the gap. In the end Strijbos overtook him, but Searle is very happy with his progression in the MX1 class and he is now closer than ever to obtain his first podium of the season.

Honda World Motocross’ Max Nagl had a really good start and he finished in a solid fourth potion. The German rider proved last weekend that he is getting his confidence back and today he managed to keep Cairoli at bay during the last laps. Nagl finished fourth ahead of the Italian.

“It’s been a good day in Bulgaria, especially as I was really motivated to come here because I like the track and I’ve had a good experience here in the past with a Grand Prix win already," Nagl said.

"I am really happy about my riding, but I’m still missing some speed and I think I need around half or one second per lap more, but it is coming weekend-by-weekend, and I’ve made another step forward. With the bike we tried a number of different tyre options from Dunlop, as usually we use a soft tyre here in Bulgaria, but as the ground is different, we’ve tried a range of tyres. The chosen option is working really well, and we’ve changed a few small things on the shock to make it easier to turn, although we aren’t that far away from our base setting. The start tomorrow will be crucial, as it will be difficult to pass, especially if the track stays hard and bumpy like today," Nagl concluded.

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antonio Cairoli was ninth in the pre-qualifying session and fifth in the qualifying race. Sevlievo is not one the Italian’s favourite tracks, but he will give his best tomorrow to be on the podium once again.

Jeremy Van Horebeek had a good start but ended the race finishing sixth, ahead of Clement Desalle, who had taken the holeshot but a small mistake in the opening lap made him drop down to the tenth position.

"It is not easy on this track; it is really fast. I had a good start and made the holeshot coming out of the first corner but crashed on the first lap," Desalle explained. "After that I just tried to find the rhythm to come back but it was hard to pass and I also had a small problem with my goggles as some dirt had got inside and at one point I could hardly see. I was really slow. It is just qualification so I know it will be better tomorrow."

Rui Gonçalves started also with the front group, but after riding third during the first half of the qualifying race, he lost his rhythm and he could only cross the finish line eighth. His teammate Xavier Boog, who is entering his 100th Grand Prix this weekend, was forced to retire from the qualifying race as he twisted his ankle when landing from a jump.

David Guarneri finished in a solid ninth position and Ken De Dycker, who struggled a little bit in the Bulgarian track today, completed the top ten.

Joel Roelants was back on his Yamaha machine this weekend after the crashed he suffered in the pre-qualifying practice last weekend at Arco di Trento which forced him to miss the Trentino Grand Prix. Today the Belgian rider had a good start but he made a mistake and had to restart from the last position. In the end Roelants crossed the finish line thirteenth.

Steven Frossard and Evgeny Bobryshev are not taking part in the MXGP of Bulgaria, as they are still recovering from their injuries, and Julien Lieber was forced to fly back to Belgium this morning after he twisted his right knee during the pre-qualifying session. 

In the MX2 Class Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jeffrey Herlings was the fastest today at the Bulgarian track and he dominated with great authority crossing the finish line almost 22 seconds ahead his teammate Jordi Tixier who finished second. The Dutch rider had a good start, so he was pleased to race at the front since the beginning and he hopes to do the same tomorrow and win the Bulgarian Grand Prix for the first time.

Jordi Tixier started third but he quickly moved up to second and he managed to hold the position comfortably until the finish flag. The French rider is looking forward to a good start tomorrow in order to try to stop his teammate winning both heats and fight for what it would be his maiden overall victory of the season.

Wilvo Nestaan JM Racing KTM’s Jake Nicholls took the holeshot and was second during the first two laps, but Tixier was faster than him and he dropped down to third. However, the British rider managed to keep a good rhythm and he rode third until the chequered flag. Tomorrow Nicholls is determined to finish once again on the podium and leave completely behind the bad result he obtained in Arco di Trento last weekend.

Monster Energy Yamaha’s Christophe Charlier showed really good speed. The French rider started fifth and after some laps he managed to move up to third, but he made a mistake and he lost the position with Nicholls. Charlier is making significant improvements every Grand Prix but he still lacks a little bit of confidence to fight for the top three positions at every race.

Silver Action KTM’s José Butrón did not have a good start today, but he managed to move from his initial eighth position to fifth. The Spanish rider did not want to take any risks and he rode safe during the whole day in order to assure a good result at tomorrow’s races.

Mel Pocock, Dylan Ferrandis and Alessandro Lupino starred in a dogfight during the second half of the qualifying race, and it was finally the British rider who won the sixth position while the Italian finished seventh. Ivo Monticelli had a great race and finished eighth while Ferrandis and home rider Petar Petrov completed the top ten.

Valentin Teillet was back on his Kawasaki this weekend after having missed several Grand Prix due to his shoulder injury. The French rider is still feeling some pain when he rides, but today he managed to finish the qualifying race in the eleventh position.

Glen Coldenhoff, who started fourth, received a 10 places penalty for not respecting a waved yellow flag and tomorrow he will have to start from the outside part of the gate.

Australia's Dean Ferris finished in Nineteenth place.

Main Photo: Gautier Paulin
Credit: Youthstream

MX1 Qualifying Race top ten:
1. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), 24:50.658;
2. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, Suzuki), +0:06.094;
3. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:09.902;
4. Maximilian Nagl (GER, Honda), +0:10.931;
5. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), +0:11.574;
6. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, Kawasaki), +0:20.090;
7. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), +0:22.737;
8. Rui Goncalves (POR, KTM), +0:27.981;
9. Davide Guarneri (ITA, KTM), +0:32.317;
10. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), +0:34.368;

MX2 Qualifying Race top ten:
1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 25:07.035;
2. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), +0:21.755;
3. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), +0:31.303;
4. Christophe Charlier (FRA, Yamaha), +0:40.472;
5. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), +0:45.738;
6. Mel Pocock (GBR, Yamaha), +0:47.485;
7. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Kawasaki), +0:47.928;
8. Ivo Monticelli (ITA, TM), +0:53.766;
9. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:53.986;
10. Petar Petrov (BUL, Yamaha), +0:54.336;
19. Dean Ferris (AUS ) Yamaha), +0:01.787;

 
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