The Frenchman had posted third-fastest time in practice and launched his KX450-SR perfectly out of the gate in Qualifying to hold second place through the first few turns before moving to the front past pit-lane. Consistently lapping faster than any of his chasers he moved relentlessly further clear by a second every lap around the rugged sandy track to win convincingly by nearly ten seconds.
Romain Febvre: “I felt great out there already from Free Practice. We found a good set-up and the bike was working perfectly. I got a great start in Qualifying, made a quick pass on Jeremy and could pull a good gap; it’s much nicer like this than battling in the pack. I’m happy about my speed and look forward to doing it again with two good races tomorrow. “
KRT teammate Ben Watson and F&H Kawasaki Racing Team’s Jed Beaton qualified seventeenth and twenty-eighth respectively.
Big Van World MTX Kawasaki’s Mikkel Haarup earnt third gate-pick for each of tomorrow’s points-scoring motos in the sixteenth round of the FIM World MX2 Motocross Championship. The Dane, clearly confident around the tough sand track from first practice when he set fastest time, had been one of a dozen riders stuck in the gate at an “unsatisfactory” first attempt to start the Qualifying race but made no mistakes at the second time-of-asking to secure a clear holeshot, sensibly conserving energy in the thin air and heat as he raced to a solid third-place.
Mikkel Haarup: “We had a really positive day already from first practice. It was a little hectic for everyone before the restart of Qualifying but we stayed cool and came away with the holeshot; it will be tough tomorrow so I took it calmly and didn’t push too hard. So far it’s been a good weekend and we have a good gate-pick for tomorrow. “
F&H ’s MX2 rider Kevin Horgmo had an issue when running top-ten in Qualifying and will go to the gate twentieth in each of tomorrow’s GP motos.
9MM Energy Drink BUD Racing Kawasaki’s Eddie Jay Wade bounced back bravely from a rib injury at the previous round last weekend in Sweden to run run fifth early on and finish seventh in the first moto of the penultimate round of the FIM European EMX250 Championship. Teammate Quentin Marc Prugnières crashed at the start after touching with another rider halfway to turn one; the French teenager was limping initially as he was assisted by medical staff, but returned to the track later to turn some useful inspection laps before tomorrow morning’s second race.
Eddie Jay Wade: “It was hard to push with the ribs but I got a good start and the adrenalin helped me for the first few laps; it started to hurt after that and I got a little arm-pump holding on too tight to compensate but I came home seventh. My body’s aching a lot at the moment, but let’s hope for another good start tomorrow and we’ll push for it again. “