Kawasaki riders suffered bad luck in the Italian round of the FIM World MX2 Motocross Championship at Fermo in Italy, but fought back defiantly to stay in contention for the title.
After his stunning victory one week earlier in Bulgaria Tommy Searle was again expected to dominate in Italy and indeed the Englishman and his Floride Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit teammate Joel Roelants continued their run of success with a 1-2 scoreline in the qualification race. Searle gated well, but was knocked to the ground at the second corner by another competitor’s out-of-control bike. Searle’s bike was severely damaged but he battled relentlessly forward until he held eighth place and had every prospect of a podium finish but the radiator had been damaged in the impact and once all of the coolant had escaped the bike inevitably stopped. Searle was again on the receiving end of rough justice in race two when he was knocked off entering the first turn and again had to fight through the pack from last position; after an amazing ride he crossed the line just three seconds behind the winner. Roelants crashed heavily soon after he had set the fastest MX2 lap of the day as he advanced to third place in the first race; suffering from blurred vision and headaches he was unable to start race two. Despite their bad luck Searle and Roelants still hold third and fourth places in the world standings and, with 13 of the 16 rounds of the series still to be raced, have plenty of time to turn around the misfortune which dogged them in Italy.
Dylan Ferrandis of Team Rockstar Bud Racing Kawasaki took his first GP holeshot in the opening race and the teenage rookie battled with the other leaderboard men for 40 minutes to secure fifth place at the finish, his best ever GP result to date. Later in the day he showed character to fight his way through the pack to finish 12th after being involved in a big crash at the first corner. Teammate Valentin Teillet bravely tried to race just one week after suffering severe injuries in Bulgaria but the pain proved too great and he had to withdraw from racing in Italy after just a few laps.
Tommy Searle: “I feel that I’m in the best shape I have ever been in my life, and our results yesterday proved how good our Kawasaki is. We had some really bad luck today. In the first race someone hit me in the second corner; the radiator and the pipe were smashed and the front disc bent but I still had hopes of coming through to second until the radiator was completely empty and the bike inevitably stopped. I got another good start in race two, but Herlings came over so hard on me and hit my front wheel; there was nothing I could do about it and many riders crashed into me. His action was stupid and dangerous. I came from dead last to second and nearly caught the winner even though I could hardly see anymore because my goggles were filled in.”
Dylan Ferrandis: “I was so pumped to get the holeshot in the first race ! This weekend I had a good feeling with both the bike and the track, and I pushed really hard to stay with the top riders; I was so happy to finish fifth. I’m not quite sure what happened at the start of the second race, but there was a big crash with several other riders. I didn’t lose too much time and fought back to
twelfth, so it was a good weekend for me.”
Valentin Teillet: “After my big crash in Bulgaria I worked with Jacky Vimond at a swimming pool all week to recover, and my condition improved enough that we took the decision to come here to Italy. I tried to race but it was too much painful; I still have a hematoma in my back and some pain on my lung, but for sure I will be ready for the next two GPs in South America.”