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Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

DeSalle 4th After Bulgarian MX1 Crash

Team Suzuki Press Office – April 22. Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1’s Clement Desalle was at the heart of the tussle for podium positions and grabbed third place in the first moto of today’s Bulgarian GP at Sevlievo on his RM-Z450 before a second moto spill ruined his chances of consecutive silverware.

After changeable conditions and some rain showers on Saturday, the hard-pack terrain was softer, slower and a little rougher than usual. Fine weather and bright sunshine pushed up the temperatures and increased the speed on race day – which drew a crowd of 15,000 – but it was a tough circuit for overtaking and produced similar lap-times among the MX1 elite.

Desalle enjoyed some ‘cut-and-thrust’ with World Champion Antonio Cairoli and Gautier Paulin in the first 35 minute and 2 lap outing but was finally able to defend a solid third position – his third consecutive finish in the top three of a moto classification – until the flag. The second race again placed Desalle in the heat of the battle for third place as Gautier Paulin and Christophe Pourcel set the pace at the front. The Belgian shared track space with Cairoli and Ken De Dycker and was eyeing his chance for another ranking of third when a small mistake launching off the finish line jump saw him land awkwardly and crash. He was able to swiftly recover his machine but the front end and handlebars were bent. He lost time manhandling the bike back into shape and then rode-out the rest of the race in a search for points, which he managed to do with 18th place by the end. Desalle now sits third in the MX1 standings 21 points behind Cairoli.

Tanel Leok re-aggravated his sore leg during practice on Saturday and this condition, coupled with his lack of race mileage over the past two months, determined the Estonian’s possibilities in Bulgaria. A pair of less-than-ideal starts and a protective approach to the motos led to 11th position overall. The former Grand Prix winner fared better in the second moto as his finish of eighth was six places better than his efforts in the first sprint. Leok now holds 10th in the World Championship points table.

The countdown begins immediately for the Grand Prix of Italy next weekend. The hard-pack and hilly circuit of Fermo will host round three of the series.

Clement Desalle:

“The first moto was not too bad. I got into my rhythm and passed Cairoli and pushed all race to try and close on Paulin. Third was OK and some good points. My start was similar in the second moto and again I got by Cairoli. I was riding my own race and trying not to take risks because the track was difficult; a small mistake could easily turn into a big one. De Dycker and Cairoli put me down to fifth but I was not worried and not getting nervous. I then made a small error before the finish line double and it sent me out of shape after the take-off. You had to be perfect on that part to be able to hit the inside line on the landing. Anyway I came up a bit short and made a big crash. The bars and radiator were bent and I lost time to stop and straighten the bike. I went out to try and get some points and managed three; better than nothing but it was not what I expected from this GP. This is part of racing though and I will continue to do my best. I have some pain in my ankle but nothing is broken and I will see if I can ride this week.”

Tanel Leok:

“I’m not so happy again. Yesterday I was perhaps a little too comfortable and when I was scrubbing a jump my leg came off the bike and I hit it on the ground. I had a lot of pain after that and practice was a write-off. In the first race I was hesitant and a bit afraid of making it worse and by the time I picked up the speed, it was too late to make up any positions. I couldn’t be as aggressive as I wanted and couldn’t pass riders. The second race was better because I felt comfortable on the bike but I’m suffering in areas – like my neck and back – simply because I haven’t ridden that much. Physically I’m in good shape but I’m getting tight. I need to ride more and I’ll be fine. ”

MX1 Moto1: 1. Christophe Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), 39:09.159; 2. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:05.667; 3. Clement Desalle (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), +0:07.718; 4. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), +0:08.467; 5. David Philippaerts (ITA, Yamaha), +0:20.631; 6. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:21.770; 7. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), +0:36.027; 8. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:44.249; 9. Rui Goncalves (POR, Honda), +0:44.410; 10. Gregory Aranda (FRA, Yamaha), +0:57.539. 14. Tanel Leok (EST, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), +1:07.600.

MX1 Moto2: 1. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), 39:17.879; 2. Christophe Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:02.427; 3. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), +0:23.189; 4. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), +0:26.379; 5. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:29.251; 6. Sebastien Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:29.975; 7. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:31.978; 8. Tanel Leok (EST, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), +1:05.762; 9. Shaun Simpson (GBR, Yamaha), +1:07.483; 10. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, KTM), +1:08.192. 18. Clement Desalle (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), -1 lap(s).

MX1 Overall Result: 1. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), 47 points; 2. Christophe Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), 47 p.; 3. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 38 p.; 4. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), 32 p.; 5. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), 29 p.; 6. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), 29 p.; 7. David Philippaerts (ITA, Yamaha), 24 p.; 8. Clement Desalle (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), 23 p.; 9. Shaun Simpson (GBR, Yamaha), 22 p.; 10. Sebastien Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), 21 p.; 11. Tanel Leok (EST, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), 20 p.

MX1 World Championship standings (after 2 of 16 rounds): 1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 88 points; 2. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), 79 p.; 3. Clement Desalle (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), 67 p.; 4. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), 63 p.; 5. Christophe Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), 59 p.; 6. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, KTM), 51 p.; 7. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), 49 p.; 8. Shaun Simpson (GBR, Yamaha), 45 p.; 9. David Philippaerts (ITA, Yamaha), 44 p.; 10. Tanel Leok (EST, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), 42 p.

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