Rockstar Energy Suzuki Double Pole Position in Brazil! / Mar.30.2014
Team Suzuki Press Office – March 29.
Suzuki RM-Z450 and RM-Z250 machinery marked the fastest pace around the red jumpy and bumpy Beto Carrero circuit today as Kevin Strijbos and Glenn Coldenhoff sealed pole position in the MXGP and MX2 classes respectively for the Grand Prix of Brazil.
Hot and humid conditions greeted this third round of 18 in the FIM Motocross World Championship and after decent starts and an effective rhythm around the Santa Catarina layout, Suzuki celebrated its first Saturday double sweep since the 2010 Grand Prix of Latvia.
Strijbos was in fine form and after drifting into the lead on the opening lap of the 20 minute and two-lap Qualification Heat, the Belgian eased to a confident and comfortable margin of victory. The performance was akin to his Pole seized at the first round of the season several weeks ago in Qatar and gives the veteran an impressive two-out-of-three ratio.
MXGP was comprehensively owned on the first day of action at Beto Carrero by the Rockstar Suzuki Energy World MXGP crew as Clement Desalle followed Strijbos to the chequered flag in second position; allowing the Belgians the first and second choices in the gate for tomorrow’s motos.
Over in MX2 and with the Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe RM-Z250 Coldenhoff raced to his first Saturday win of the season in just his third GP appearance in yellow. The Dutchman chased and passed early leader Jose Butron to claimed victory by three seconds from Max Anstie. With World Champion Jeffrey Herlings absent through injury, Coldenhoff is the sole rider in the class with experience of winning a Grand Prix and now stands in a great position to obtain his second career triumph tomorrow.
The weather outlay for Sunday predicts cloudy and unstable conditions but with a small amount of rainfall forecast.
“I pushed hard to make a gap at the front and it was eight-10 seconds at one point. I had a bit of arm-pump so in the end it looked easy but it wasn’t! Overall though it was a good day – both in MXGP and MX2 - and we have to try and repeat it tomorrow. In the morning I couldn’t really find my lines but we made some changes for the race that worked out. Everybody is happy at the moment and we are trying our best. As I’ve said before I like Brazil and this circuit. It is great to race in front of the public here. It will be special to make it three podiums in a row tomorrow.”
“It was a good race but I really had to work for it. My start wasn’t too bad but Nicholls blocked me really hard. I came out sixth instead of any further up, so then I had to push to reach second. In the last few laps I had a stitch so I had to slow down; I need to watch my breathing a bit more carefully tomorrow. We might have rain on Sunday but if the track is prepared well it won’t be a problem. At least I hope we have some more lines because the layout is not easy for overtaking.”
“Any victory is never easy! I moved my way to the front and once I was there I took it bit easy to save some energy for tomorrow. It was really hot today and I’m not so used to that but I’m sure we’ll be fine for the motos. We will do our best and try really hard. For sure we want that red plate but last year here I also won the qualification heat and it didn’t mean much. I think I am one of the favourites tomorrow but Tonus and Anstie are also fast. It will be a tough competition.”
MXGP Qualification Heat Classification:
1. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki) 25:01.250;
2. Clement Desalle (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki), +0:06.097;
3. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:10.130;
4. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, Yamaha), +0:13.508;
5. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), +0:13.780;
6. Shaun Simpson (GBR, KTM), +0:21.906;
7. Todd Waters (AUS, Husqvarna), +0:28.664;
8. Maximilian Nagl (GER, Honda), +0:33.352;
9. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:41.052;
10. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), +0:41.487;
MX2 Qualification Heat Classification:
1. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, Rockstar Energy Suzuki), 25:25.941;
2. Max Anstie (GBR, Yamaha), +0:02.189;
3. Arnaud Tonus (SUI, Kawasaki), +0:05.077;
4. Aleksandr Tonkov (RUS, Husqvarna), +0:12.835;
5. Romain Febvre (FRA, Husqvarna), +0:13.208;
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