Results MotoCross World Championship, Sevlievo, Bulgaria

2007-06-17 11:40
De Dycker sixth for CAS Honda in Bulgarian heat

Josh Coppins has won a steaming Motocross Grand Prix of Bulgaria at Sevlievo for the eighth round in the 2007 MX1 World Championship. Antonio Cairoli took the MX2 class honours for the seventh time this season in front of a 26,000 crowd. Honda's highest placed man on the day was Ken de Dycker with sixth position while Martin Honda's Pascal
Leuret just missed the MX2 podium.

The Sevlievo circuit hosted the Bulgarian round of the GP series for the fourth time since the turn of the century and for the second year in succession. The excellent facility situated some 200km east of the capital Sofia and a short drive out of the town of Sevlievo itself once again housed a very capable race track. The wide fast course was
littered with jumps, long uphill straights and downhill drops. The open corners provided more than one line choice but the hard-pack terrain was slippery in the most well worn sections.

After a lacklustre Grand Prix in France Ken de Dycker was looking
more like himself. The Belgian battled blisters and leg pain to
figure among positions within the mid-top ten. Although he was not
able to run with the leaders through the two motos (a poor start in
the first race hardly helped) he did set a pace that made sure he was
elevated to the next tier. He was eighth and sixth for his final
ranking and finished just one point, and one position, ahead of CAS
Honda team-mate Mike Brown.

Unusually for Brown he failed to get away in the first five for
Moto1. He then had to work in the lower half of the top ten, finally
passing De Dycker for seventh in the last two laps. Normal service
was resumed by the American and Honda's sole moto winner this season
in Moto2 as he lead for the opening two laps before succumbing to a
faster pace set by Coppins, Steve Ramon and David Philippaerts. A
dice with Sebastien Pourcel was curtailed when the pair touched and
Brown crashed. He was able to remount and pass the finish line in eighth place.

Julien Bill, in only his second Grand Prix for the Italian Martin
Honda team, lapped with the leaders for the formative stages of the
first moto before settling into a steady rhythm that gave him a
career-best MX1 race result of sixth. Sadly a broken front brake
after a crash in the second race caused a DNF and he could not
capitalise on his positive beginning. It was left to another
'Julien', Julien Vanni from HDI Motorsport Honda, to shine with the
CRF450R. The Frenchman and former MX3 Grand Prix winner scored his
highest ever MX1 set of results with tenth and seventh for eighth
overall after a pair of good starts and an effective synergy with the
racing surface.

The world championship standings show that Brown is Honda's best
placed rider in the MX1 class with seventh position and only fifteen
points away from the absent Kevin Strijbos; who was missing due to a
knee injury. Coppins leads the competition from Ramon and
Philippaerts. De Dycker is also in the top ten with ninth.

In MX2 Antonio Cairoli won both motos for his sixth shut-out of a
dominant season. He was followed onto the podium by Tyla Rattray and
Tommy Searle respectively.

Martin Honda's Pascal Leuret was a protagonist once more and just one
lap away from making the final top three. Rattray's late relegation
of the 26 year old to fourth place in Moto2 pushed him down to fourth overall.

The Frenchman was part of a brief but entertaining contest for second
position in the opening race. He disputed the standing with Rattray,
Searle and Christophe Pourcel behind runaway winner Antonio Cairoli
and finally finished fourth. In the second 35 minute and 2 lap affair
he led for two laps until Cairoli's authoritative speed ended his
brief stint as pace-maker. Pourcel also moved through and he held
third for most of the race until Rattray's ever-closing shadow pushed
past on the last lap. The dejected CRF250R rider was at a loss to
explain his near miss.

Leuret's fourth position means that he holds the same ranking in the
Championship - just one point ahead of Searle.

The world championship will reconvene in two weeks time at Uddevalla
for the Grand Prix of Sweden with trips to Italy and Czech Republic
also taking place in July.

Ken de Dycker, CAS Honda: "In the first moto I had a bad start and
was 15th on the first lap, I came through but towards the end I had
to ease off because I was getting tired and sore. In the second heat
I was not great out of the gate but got on the inside and came out
OK. I was riding well until the final stages again and I was bothered
by blisters and pain in my legs from last week. I could not do any
practice this week so for me this was a good GP."

Mike Brown, CAS Honda: "I was second fastest in warm-up and liked the
track. My start was OK in the first moto and I came through to
seventh but I could not get 'going' in the first twenty minutes. It
was like I was standing still. In the last twenty minutes I picked it
up and passed a few guys and I felt good at the end of the race. In
the second moto I got the holeshot and led for a little while but a
few of those guys were just quicker today. Pourcel and I got together
at the top of the hill and I went down after the whoops. It took
forever to start and the bike and I think I was down in 11th or
something like that. On the last lap I passed De Reuver for eighth
place. Overall it was a pretty good day. I felt alright and will look
to keep on improving."

Julien Bill, Martin Honda: "I had a really good start in the first
moto and then rode well. I wasn't struggling with my arms and the
bike was working awesome. So I had a good result and I was really
happy. In the second race my start wasn't so good. On the second
downhill someone fell in front of me and I tried to go around the
side. I hit Rennet and we crashed together pretty hard. I damaged my
front brake and tried to restart but the tube was broken and I had to
stop. The team is awesome and the bike is perfect. I feel really good
here. Now that I know I have the speed for the top ten then why not better?"

Pascal Leuret, Martin Honda: "I hate the hot weather! It was stupid
of me today and I cannot tell you why I am not on the podium. To make
the holeshot and finish fourth in the second moto is not a good
result. Second position was possible and I am disappointed. If
anything this result is OK for the championship and I stay fourth one
point ahead of Searle. The podium was so close today but there are
positives because this was my first holeshot and I could lead. I have
not lost any confidence today but I don't leave this GP with the best
sensation."

Julien Vanni, HDI Honda: "Since I arrived yesterday things went well
all weekend. I was fast in both practice sessions and also the Timed
Practice. I live in the south of France so the hard and dry
tracks like this place are perfect for me. These conditions were
great and I had the condition for forty minutes. I had two good
starts and found a good rhythm right away; it is not often a GP like
this happens. It proves that with the starts and the confidence
running in the top ten of the world is possible and I really enjoyed
racing with De Reuver, De Dycker and Leok. This result has been a
long time coming."



Source: Honda Pro Image

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