Moto News Wrap for September 15 by Darren Smart

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Dunlop

Australasian News

Jay Wilson heading to MXoN before returning for Supercross – With the 2015 MX Nationals MX2 championship number one plate taking pride of place inside his trophy cabinet, Jay Wilson is getting set to take aim on the fast approaching SX2 category of the  2015 Australian Supercross Championship … albeit with a small ‘detour’ between now and the opening round at Bathurst, NSW, on October 10.

Later this week the 21-year-old Gold Coast ace will jet out to Europe for the first time ever to join countrymen Todd Waters and Dean Ferris to represent Australia at the 2015 Motocross of Nations world teams challenge in Ernee, France, on September 26/27.

“I’ve never even been to Europe, so I just can’t wait to get there and get into it,” enthuses Wilson, who will line up at the prestigious event aboard a potent Rinaldi-kitted Yamaha YZ250F race bike.

“Of course I’ve seen photos and videos of the track, and it looks awesome. It looks hard-packed, which I like, so I can’t wait to get there and represent Australia.

“I’m sure the whole atmosphere of the event will be huge and I’m hoping we can bring home a result for Australia to be proud of.”

JCR Yamaha’s Jay Wilson takes fairytale MX2 Championship win
JCR Yamaha’s Jay Wilson took a fairytale MX2 Championship win

Immediately after the world teams championship event, Wilson will be back on a plane home to Australia and itching to sink his teeth into the 2015 Australian Supercross Championship, where his goal is to book-end his MX Nationals motocross title with a SX2 Supercross championship.

KTM Brings Ward Into Factory Team: Australia’s factory KTM team has expanded from two MX1 riders to add one MX2 rider into the team and young Caleb Ward has been rewarded for his speed and commitment to be signed with the team with the dream to win the Australian MX2 Motocross Championship in 2016.

Ward will be in the KTM big rig beside Kirk Gibbs and Luke Styke and will have the benefit of a full factory KTM250SX-F at his disposal.

Mid-pack starts prevented late-season hero and KTM Factory Support racer Caleb Ward from winning his second Coolum national of the season.
Mid-pack starts prevented late-season hero and KTM Factory Support racer Caleb Ward from winning his second Coolum national of the season. News of a full factory ride with KTM for 2016 though is just reward for an excellent season

Matt Moss is Ready: After a year of injury Matt Moss is vowing that he is fit and ready to defend his Australian Supercross Championship and is ‘pounding out 20 lappers’ in the lead up to the opening round at Bathurst on the 10th of October. Only a brave man would bet again the Suzuki rider winning his third supercross title in a row.

BCP’s Hired Gun for Aussie Nationals: New Zealand Honda rider Trent Collins will ride for the BCP Pro Circuit Honda team at the Australian Junior Motocross Championships being held in Western Australia in September.

Gajser and Canard for Japan MX  Title: American Trey Canard and World MX2 red plate owner Tim Gajser will head to Japan to race in the final round of the All-Japan Motocross Championship on October the 25th at the Sugo circuit.

Trey Canard comments: “We are grateful to be able to race in Japan. From this season, by the technical support of Honda Racing Corporation and (HRC) Honda Technical Research Institute motorcycle R & D Center (HGA), performance we have had big improvement.”

Tim Gajser comments: “I am very happy to be able to compete in the All-Japan Motocross Championship Series. I could not participate because of injury last year, Japan is also the home of Honda, so that is important for me and the team. We aim to win at everything. First of all I want to fight for the world championship, I would like to go to Japan as a world champion. “

New Venue for NSW Solo Speedway Championships: Tamworth’s Australian Equine and Livestock Events Centre (AELEC) will transform into a spectacular showcase of speedway racing when the 2015 New South Wales Open Senior Solo Speedway Championship rolls into town from December 11-12.

Final WAMX Junior State Round: The final round of the WAMX Junior Motocross Championships was held at Wanneroo last weekend and it was Kayden Minear, Tylar Solomon, Cody Chittick, Liam Atkinson, Mitchell Outram and Justin Hart who wrapped up their respective championships.

Husqvarna Run Out Deals – Right now you can race in and save more on selected 2014 and 2015 Husqvarna Motorcycles. Plus 2014 and 2015 Motocross models come with bonus extras. Make tracks today to your authorised Husqvarna Motorcycles Australia Dealership and get it right here, right now, while stocks last. For full details, models and bonus extras follow the link below to the Husqvarna Motorcycles news site

Australian squad gearing up for 2015 Trials des Nations – Preparations for Team Australia’s 2015 FIM Trials des Nations (TdN) squad are well underway, with all members of the squad now in camp in Tarragona, Spain ahead of the September 19-20 event. Australian Men’s team representatives Kyle Middleton and Chris Bayles have been in Europe for the past two weeks competing in Rounds 8 and 9 of the FIM World Trials Championship in Portugal and Spain.

Both will carry good form into the TdN, with Middleton taking out his third national title in the Australian Trials Championship late last month, while Bayles finished in fifth. Fellow teammates Tim Coleman and Colin Zarczynski also returned solid results in the national championship, finishing in second and fourth respectively.

Our Women’s team will also be primed to deliver on the international stage, with Kristie McKinnon (2015 Australian Women’s Trial champion) and Kaitlyn Cummins (fourth in the Australian Women’s Trial Championship) ramping up their preparations by competing in the Spanish round of the Women’s World Trial Championship on the weekend.

Dunlop

American News

Covington and Sipes On Top of the World: Thomas Covington has become the first American to win the overall of a MX2 World Motocross Championship round in many years after the Kawasaki rider took out the Mexico GP while former pro motocrosser Ryan Sipes has become the first American to win the outright at the 2015 ISDE held in Slovakia. See the full reports and results below.

Thomas Covington
Thomas Covington

Wilson at Glen Helen: With the USGP only six days away, KTM factory rider Dean Wilson turned up to Glen Helen’s REM event last weekend and on a very rough circuit managed to dominate the 450 Pros and the Open Experts in his four-moto day. Dean is keen to make a statement when he lines up for the MXGP this weekend.

Dunlop

Euro News

Waters and Ferris In Mexico: Husqvarna mounted Dean Ferris and Todd Waters were once again in the thick of the action at the Mexico round of the World Motocross Championship held last weekend.

Waters bounced back from a crash caused by organisational incompetence that saw the Queenslander slam into a downed bike during the qualifying race on Saturday to be running as high in fifth in the opening MXGP moto on Sunday before a crash on lap eight saw the Aussie drop back to 12th place before ending the moto in 11th place.

Moto two saw Waters start the race in 10th and despite attention from a series of GP stars finished the race in 11thand now sits 9th in the championship chase and admirably has scored points in all bit two motos through the 34 motos held so far in 2015.

Todd Waters
Todd Waters

Ferris started moto one in fourth place and the FC350 mounted rider fought hard all moto to end up in sixth place but in moto two Ferris got a poor start to start the second lap in 12th place he ut rode by some serious competition to end the moto in 10th for eighth outright on the day and is now three points from 11th place in the series.

 

Dean Ferris
Dean Ferris

Factory Bikes Found: Last week I reported that Glenn Coldenhoff’s two factory Suzuki’s were stolen from a motel in France and the good news is that both bikes have been recovered.

Slovenian SGP: Jason Doyle, Chris Holder and Troy Batchelor finished 6th, 7th and 8th respectively at the Slovenian round of the Speedway Grand Prix last weekend. Holder and Doyle now sit 6th and 7th in the championship standings while Batchelor is back in 12th with little hope of making the all important top 8 by series end.

Vet Motocross of Nations – Farleigh Castle – UK: John Dowd has dominated the Vet MXoN held at Farleigh Castle last weekend by winning all four motos over Kiwi Josh Coppins and Pom Brian Wheeler.

Individual Overall

1. John Dowd – 1-1-1-1

2. Josh Coppins – 2-2-3-3

3. Brian Wheeler – 10-4-2-2

4. Johan Boonen – 4-6-4-4

5. Jean Michael Bayle – 3-3-8-15

6. Phil Mercer – 7-8-13-7

7. Tom Church – 21-10-6-5

8. Gordan Crockard – 9-16-12-8

9. Tom Vanloon – 8-14-16-10

10. Andy Watkins – 12-12-14-13

Raga Beats Bou: At the final two rounds of the FIM Trials World Championships held in Spain last weekend we saw Adam Raga take two wins over the already crowned champion Toni Bou.

Smarty’s Race Report and Results from Last Weekend

Dunlop

World Motocross Championships – Round 17 – Mexico
MX1 Race Report

It was business as usual for Yamaha Factory Racing Yamalube’s Romain Febvre who upped his stats to fourteen race wins, twelve consecutive podiums, of which seven have been grand prix overalls. “I am so happy to win both motos here. I felt good all weekend on this track even if this morning it was really muddy. I enjoyed it. We had some time off after Assen and we did some tests and made some improvements on our starts so that’s a really good point [from today]. We are already working for next year because the championship is already won. We can try different things and even if they are not working then it is not so bad; for sure this weekend it worked very well. The first race was muddy and it stuck to the bike a lot. The second moto was like how a track should be – many lines – and I enjoyed it.”

Romain Febvre
Romain Febvre

For Hitachi Construction Machinery Revo KTM’s Shaun Simpson it’s simple. The gnarlier, the better. The overnight rain fell completely in favour of Simpson who is having his best ever season in the premier class. Simpson revelled in the rutted up circuit in race one for a convincing second place finish but what was really impressive was the way he diced his way through the pack in race two and passed factory rider after factory rider to take another second for second overall. “The track in the second race was how every grand prix should be. There were a lot of lines to pass and I didn’t feel stressed, I felt smooth and comfortable. Overall it’s just nice to show I can run up front and I can be on the podium and show good speed, not only in the sand.”

There are only fifty points left to race for this season which means that Team HRC’s Evgeny Bobryshev has already concreted a top three result as he is 58 points clear of Simpson in fourth. This weekend the Russian made ten points on his Team HRC teammate Gautier Paulin and now trails by 27 points which means he is still in the running for second place in the championship.

When Yamaha Factory Racing Yamalube’s Jeremy Van Horebeek gets the start he can run the pace which was evident in race two as he went bar-to-bar with Paulin, Simpson, Bobryshev and Coldenhoff in a massive battle for second. Simpson and Bobryshev both ended up nudging him back fourth which is the result he took away this weekend.

Meanwhile Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe’s Glenn Coldenhoff rounded out the top five after a mistake-riddled. Nevertheless the Dutch rookie recovered well in both races for two top five finishes.

MXGP 2015 - Leon, Mexico
MXGP 2015 – Leon, Mexico

MXGP Race 1 Top Ten: 1. Romain Febvre (FRA, Yamaha), 36:35.450; 2. Shaun Simpson (GBR, KTM), +0:45.231; 3. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +1:14.599; 4. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Honda), +1:22.649; 5. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, Suzuki), +1:26.466; 6. Dean Ferris (AUS, Husqvarna), +2:06.200; 7. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, Yamaha), +2:08.975; 8. Maximilian Nagl (GER, Husqvarna), +2:20.819; 9. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), -1 lap(s); 10. Tyla Rattray (RSA, Kawasaki), -1 lap(s). 11. Todd Waters (AUS, Husqvarna).

MXGP Race 2 Top Ten: 1. Romain Febvre (FRA, Yamaha), 35:32.826; 2. Shaun Simpson (GBR, KTM), +0:02.302; 3. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:04.883; 4. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, Yamaha), +0:06.685; 5. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, Suzuki), +0:08.990; 6. Maximilian Nagl (GER, Husqvarna), +0:11.136; 7. Tyla Rattray (RSA, Kawasaki), +0:12.221; 8. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), +0:13.728; 9. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Honda), +0:37.447; 10. Dean Ferris (AUS, Husqvarna), +0:39.006; 11. Todd Waters (AUS, Husqvarna).

MXGP Overall Top Ten: 1. Romain Febvre (FRA, YAM), 50 points; 2. Shaun Simpson (GBR, KTM), 44 p.; 3. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, HON), 40 p.; 4. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, YAM), 32 p.; 5. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, SUZ), 32 p.; 6. Gautier Paulin (FRA, HON), 30 p.; 7. Maximilian Nagl (GER, HUS), 28 p.; 8. Dean Ferris (AUS, HUS), 26 p.; 9. Tyla Rattray (RSA, KAW), 25 p.; 10. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), 25 p. 11. Todd Waters (AUS, Husqvarna)

MXGP Championship Top Ten: 1. Romain Febvre (FRA, YAM), 688 points; 2. Gautier Paulin (FRA, HON), 566 p.; 3. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, HON), 539 p.; 4. Shaun Simpson (GBR, KTM), 481 p.; 5. Maximilian Nagl (GER, HUS), 442 p.; 6. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, YAM), 426 p.; 7. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 416 p.; 8. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, SUZ), 393 p.; 9. Todd Waters (AUS, HUS), 344 p.; 10. Clement Desalle (BEL, SUZ), 331 p. 11. Kevin Strijbos (Bel, SUZ), 287 p. 12. Dean Ferris (AUS, HUS), 284 p.

Dunlop

MX2 Race Report

What better way to head into your home grand prix than as the most recent round winner? Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team’s Thomas Covington hit a couple of milestones today and proved just how versatile he is with a solid ride in race one for fourth followed up with his first ever race win in race two and overall victory.

“It’s so good to finally get a win. I’ve been pushing hard always and it’s been a tough two years with a lot of bad races, a few good ones and coming here to get this win is unbelievable. I hope to keep this going. The first race the track was really muddy and I just tried to survive and not to crash; I had the holeshot but went too much to the outside and a few guys passed me. I tried to keep on two wheels and it was pretty tough. The track was completely different for the second moto; it was pretty dry in some places. I was second at the first corner and finally made the move to first place. I tried to put down some fast lap to make a gap; I knew that Gajser was coming back at the end of the race but I held on to win this moto. I had no idea that I had won the GP until I arrived at the podium! Next weekend it will be good to race at Glen Helen; I will go to my home race full of confidence.”

Thomas Covington
Thomas Covington

Honda Gariboldi’s Tim Gajser didn’t have the best start to the day. The red plate holder binned it big time in race one but only lost one position. A couple of laps later a message was put out on his pit-board “save bike!” which for Gajser, a rider who is a complete animal and uses every ounce of power, made it a nail biting end to the race. Nevertheless he nursed it home for fifth and then rode smart in race two for second place and second overall. He now leads the championship by 18 points over Pauls Jonass.

“The weekend was really tough. We had all different kinds of terrain from deep mud to soft mud to then pretty hard in the second race, which for me was actually quite perfect. They moved the mud off the track and there were many lines so you could have a good race. I’m a little disappointed with the first race. The key was the start because there was so much mud and just one line, but fifth wasn’t so bad. In the second race I almost went down at the start because Jonass crashed in front of me but I could save it. Then I could make some nice passes and come back to second which was great. I enjoyed the riding today – maybe the first 15minutes I was not so much focused, but in the second half of the second moto I found some really nice lines and my riding was better. Serizawa-san and the HRC engineers made a good map for the bike today so I’d like to thank them for their hard work. We have one GP left now so two heats, and definitely I have to be focused 110 per cent, even more than I have been now. We cannot make mistakes now. It’s the final GP and it’s good to have a little point’s gap but anything can happen so we will go there and do the same as every race and just try and have fun. It’s hard to not think about the championship, but I am really focused on each race as it comes.”

Thomas Covington
Thomas Covington

Kemea Yamaha Yamalube’s Benoit Paturel was visibly pumped to uncork his first ever bottle of bubbles. “It is incredible for me. This year I have progressed step by step and to take my first podium, the sensation is incredible, I think for every rider it’s the same.”

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Pauls Jonass, mentored by the greatest of all time Stefan Everts, had the craziest weekend. Just when it looked as though the title challenger had hooked a gear, with his race one win and nine point gain on the red plate holder Gajser, it all turned sour when he crashed crossing the Fox Holeshot line (but still took it) and then again a lap later in spectacular style when he was catapulted off his bike.

Even though the Latvian lessened his chances of claiming the 2015 FIM Motocross MX2 World Championship title, he can count himself lucky that he walked away from such an enormous crash unscathed.

The biggest key to muddy conditions is to keep the momentum up, which coincidently is the same tact necessary to ride sand.

Monster Energy DRT Kawasaki’s Max Anstie was fast in race one where he was second behind Jonass. In race two he crashed out of fourth and only managed to salvage tenth but still rounded out the top five.

MX2 Race 1 Top Ten: 1. Pauls Jonass (LAT, KTM), 35:48.318; 2. Max Anstie (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:04.477; 3. Benoit Paturel (FRA, Yamaha), +0:26.170; 4. Thomas Covington (USA, Kawasaki), +0:32.672; 5. Tim Gajser (SLO, Honda), +0:34.821; 6. Harri Kullas (FIN, Husqvarna), -1 lap(s); 7. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, KTM), -1 lap(s); 8. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Suzuki), -1 lap(s); 9. Brent Van doninck (BEL, Yamaha), -2 lap(s); 10. Valentin Guillod (SUI, Yamaha), -2 lap(s).

MX2 Race 2 Top Ten: 1. Thomas Covington (USA, Kawasaki), 34:34.352; 2. Tim Gajser (SLO, Honda), +0:06.836; 3. Julien Lieber (BEL, Yamaha), +0:22.502; 4. Valentin Guillod (SUI, Yamaha), +0:24.846; 5. Benoit Paturel (FRA, Yamaha), +0:25.601; 6. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, KTM), +0:45.919; 7. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Suzuki), +1:03.913; 8. Harri Kullas (FIN, Husqvarna), +1:14.447; 9. Ivo Monticelli (ITA, KTM), +1:46.917; 10. Samuele Bernardini (ITA, TM), +2:00.450.

MX2 Overall Top Ten: 1. Thomas Covington (USA, KAW), 43 points; 2. Tim Gajser (SLO, HON), 38 p.; 3. Benoit Paturel (FRA, YAM), 36 p.; 4. Pauls Jonass (LAT, KTM), 33 p.; 5. Max Anstie (GBR, KAW), 32 p.; 6. Valentin Guillod (SUI, YAM), 29 p.; 7. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, KTM), 29 p.; 8. Harri Kullas (FIN, HUS), 28 p.; 9. Julien Lieber (BEL, YAM), 27 p.; 10. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, SUZ), 27 p.

MX2 Championship Top Ten: 1. Tim Gajser (SLO, HON), 556 points; 2. Pauls Jonass (LAT, KTM), 538 p.; 3. Max Anstie (GBR, KAW), 506 p.; 4. Valentin Guillod (SUI, YAM), 475 p.; 5. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, SUZ), 467 p.; 6. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 423 p.; 7. Julien Lieber (BEL, YAM), 418 p.; 8. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KAW), 393 p.; 9. Benoit Paturel (FRA, YAM), 356 p.; 10. Petar Petrov (BUL, KAW), 304 p.

Dunlop

FIM Speedway Grand Prix – Round 9 – KRSKO

World champion Greg Hancock racked up 20 points out of a possible 21 after topping the rostrum at the Slovenian SGP ahead of Great Britain’s World Championship leader Tai Woffinden, Danish international Peter Kildemand and triple world champion Nicki Pedersen.

Hancock’s heroics took him up to second in the standings on 102 points. But he’s still 25 short of runaway leader Woffinden, who charged to 18 to move on to 127 overall.

Despite reaching the last two SGP finals, an unspectacular start to his title defence has left the American icon playing catch-up to his good friend. But even with just three rounds to race, the 45-year-old is a long way from waving the white flag.

“The only thing I could wish for right now is to be giving Tai a bit more of a run for his money. I had big hopes of retaining the title and doing it all again, but I missed out in a few crucial rounds, where it didn’t go as well as I had hoped.” Hancock said.

“Gold is what we are chasing, but it’s going to be very, very tough. A lot of people would just take their hat off to Tai now and say ‘thank you and congratulations.’ But I’m an optimistic sort of guy. I won’t give up until there is no chance. Right now, there is still a chance.

“He’s a quick guy and you can see he’s riding with a ton of confidence. It’s hard to beat him. But I’m sure Tai doesn’t take anything for granted. He’s still working hard and knows there are three rounds left; anything can happen.”

Hancock admitted prior to the Krsko event that some his pre-season changes haven’t delivered the results he hoped they would. But he has no regrets about constantly searching for ways to get an edge over his younger rivals. “It’s about putting the pieces of the puzzle together. We’re constantly trying to find small improvements. It’s hard to reinvent the speedway bike and we’re not trying to do that. We’re just trying to make it a little bit better.” Hancock continued. “I have some good people working with me who make a speedway bike not just the simple piece of machinery it is. I can’t beat these guys by just turning the throttle. I have to outsmart them and have my kit working absolutely perfectly, so that all I have to do is steer it.”

World champion Greg Hancock racked up 20 points out of a possible 21 after topping the rostrum at the Slovenian SGP ahead of Great Britain’s World Championship leader Tai Woffinden, Danish international Peter Kildemand
World champion Greg Hancock racked up 20 points out of a possible 21 after topping the rostrum at the Slovenian SGP ahead of Great Britain’s World Championship leader Tai Woffinden, Danish international Peter Kildemand

As a proud Swedish resident with a huge fanbase in the country, Hancock would love to deliver what would be his first ever victory in his second homeland. “I have never won a round in Sweden and I have always wanted to. It’s a great country and I have a lot of history, family and sponsors there. There are a lot of great people there, who have taken me to another level going back over the last 10 or 15 years. I owe those guys a lot and nothing would feel better than to stand on top of the podium at the Friends Arena.” Hancock concluded.

Runner-up Woffinden admits he’s ‘on top of the world’ after finishing second in Krsko for the second straight visit. He snatched silver to go 20 points clear at the top of the World Championship in 2013, and he’s elated to have left with an even more commanding lead this time around. “It would be nice to win a GP. But like I have been saying all season, it’s about collecting points,” he said. “I’m pleased to be back on the Krsko podium; I was there in 2013 and in the same position. I feel on top of the world now. I feel so fit, so healthy and I still feel fresh – it’s like my season is just getting started.”

Third-placed Kildemand was delighted to take another step closer to the World Championship’s top eight, racking up 13 points on the night to move within 13 of Poland’s Maciej Janowski in eighth. I just need to push harder to make the top eight. I’m happy with third place and I got the points I needed, so that’s great.” Kildemand commented.

Next up is the TEGERA® Stockholm SGP, which takes place on September 26 at the Friends Arena – a venue built just yards from the Solna apartment where Hancock started his young family with wife Jennie.

MITAS SLOVENIAN SGP SCORES: 1 Greg Hancock 20, 2 Tai Woffinden 18, 3 Peter Kildemand 13, 4 Nicki Pedersen 13, 5 Niels-Kristian Iversen 11,6 Jason Doyle 11, 7 Chris Holder 9, 8 Troy Batchelor 9, 9 Maciej Janowski 9, 10 Matej Zagar 8, 11 Chris Harris 4, 12 Andreas Jonsson 4, 13 Krzysztof Kasprzak 3, 14 Michael Jepsen Jensen 2, 15 Tomas H Jonasson 2, 16 Aleksander Conda 1, 17 Denis Stojs 1

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS: 1 Tai Woffinden 127, 2 Greg Hancock 102, 3 Nicki Pedersen 98, 4 Matej Zagar 89, 5 Niels-Kristian Iversen 81, 6 Chris Holder 78, 7 Jason Doyle 77, 8 Maciej Janowski 72, 9 Michael Jepsen Jensen 66, 10 Peter Kildemand 59, 11 Andreas Jonsson 55, 12 Troy Batchelor 49

Dunlop

Red Bull X-Fighters – Pretoria, South Africa
X-Fighters 2015 - Pretoria - Tom Pages
X-Fighters 2015 – Pretoria – Tom Pages

Tom Pagès of France and Clinton Moore of Australia delivered a Final for the ages on Saturday in front of 17,000 wild fans at the return of the Red Bull X-Fighters World Tour to Pretoria, South Africa. Pagès claimed the top step of the podium with Moore in second, while Taka Higashino of Japan took third.

France’s Tom Pagès, the innovator who has changed the game in freestyle motocross, shook up the 2015 World Tour standings as well with an electrifying triumph in the Red Bull X-Fighters return to Pretoria, South Africa on September 12. Pagès faced the man who has clung to the top of the overall leaderboard all season, Clinton Moore of Australia, in a flawless Final where both riders served up tricks that were unimaginable in seasons past.

X-Fighters 2015 - Pretoria - Clinton Moore
X-Fighters 2015 – Pretoria – Clinton Moore

Moore drew roars from the 17,000 spectators, delivering his signature Bundy and the first dirt-to-dirt Volt ever landed in competition on the unique track’s double line. But Pagès has the biggest bag of tricks in the sport, and, going last, he rode like a man possessed. The Frenchman threw down his signature Alley-Oop Flair, Bike Flip and Special Flip, as well as the Transfer Flip he just added to his tricklist, to claim the unanimous votes of all five judges.

The result ties Pagès and Moore in the points at the top of the overall standings in the world’s most prestigious freestyle motocross series, setting up what’s sure to be an epic showdown at the season finale in Abu Dhabi on October 30.

“This weekend has been insane,” said Pagès. “Now I’ve got time to go back and really practice hard ahead of Abu Dhabi. I want to add a new trick to my list there and to ride even better in the finale for sure.”

Taka Higashino of Japan earned third on the red dirt in front of the historic Union Buildings with a strong run that included the exceptionally difficult Rock-Solid Backflip as well as a superb Flair he’s recently mastered. The defending Word Tour champion, Australia’s Josh Sheehan, made his rarely seen Double Backflip look easy in earning fourth.

X-Fighters 2015 - Pretoria
X-Fighters 2015 – Pretoria – 1. Thomas Pagès (FRA), 2. Clinton Moore (AUS), 3. Taka Higashino (JPN

Pretoria Results: 1. Thomas Pagès (FRA), 2. Clinton Moore (AUS), 3. Taka Higashino (JPN), 4. Josh Sheehan (AUS), 5. Rob Adelberg (AUS), 6. David Rinaldo (FRA), 7. Maikel Melero (ESP), 8. Rémi Bizouard (FRA), 9. Adam Jones (USA), 10. Javier Villegas (CHI), 11. Alastair Sayer (BOT), 12. Dany Torres (ESP)

World Tour Standings: 1. Thomas Pagès (FRA) 280 points, 2. Clinton Moore (AUS) 280, 3. Levi Sherwood (NZL) 185, 4. David Rinaldo (FRA) 145, 5. Josh Sheehan (AUS) 145, 6. Rob Adelberg (AUS) 135, 7. Dany Torres (ESP) 100, 8. Adam Jones (USA) 100, 9. Taka Higashino (JPN) 95, 10. Rémi Bizouard (FRA) 90

Dunlop

FIM International Six Days Enduro – Kosice, Slovakia
Australia climbed to the top step of the podium and chanting Aussie-Aussie-Aussie, as Spain looked on and France were yet to mount the podium to claim the top spot on the rostrum.
Australia climbed to the top step of the podium and chanting Aussie-Aussie-Aussie, as Spain looked on and France were yet to mount the podium to claim the top spot on the rostrum.

The Australian World Trophy Team line up of Josh Green, Daniel Milner, Matthew Phillips, Beau Ralston, Lachlan Stanford and Glenn Kearney performed flawlessly (and within the rules) over the six days to finish just one minute behind France who at the time of writing had three riders only provisionally reinstated after being disqualified from missing a check point on day three. Time will tell if the Aussie riders are given the win but as we know the FIM are slow at finalising any form of protest or rule infringement (see Darcy Ward and James Stewart).

The Junior World Trophy class saw the Australian line up of Daniel Sanders, Tye Simmonds, Broc Grabham and Tom Mason finished with a dominating 15 minute win over Spain with team Italy rounding out the podium while Tayla Jones, Jemma Wilson and Jessica Gardiner won the Women’s World Trophy overall by almost an hour from France.

In the FIM Junior World Trophy team competition the day belonged to Australia. Finally ending a twenty-year winless streak, Australia secured the top step of the podium.
In the FIM Junior World Trophy team competition the day belonged to Australia. Finally ending a twenty-year winless streak, Australia secured the top step of the podium.

“I think this week has gone even better than I could have expected” said Jones. “My first goal was to defend our Women’s World Trophy title, which we did. But to win every day and only lose two special tests – both to Jemma – has been incredible.”

Competing in the highly competitive Enduro 2 category, Daniel Milner fought his way through six tough and demanding days of racing to place second overall in his class while also ending his week as runner-up in the outright individual classification. “It’s been a good week. I managed to win a day outright while also consistently challenge for the overall victory. Of course I’d love to have taken the win but to end six days of racing just 45 seconds behind isn’t really a bad thing. Overall I can’t fault how things have gone. My bike was flawless and aside from swapping handlebars and suspension I pretty much rode my bike as it came out of the crate. To deliver this level of result on it is fantastic.”

Australia’s Daniel Milner closed out the ISDE as outright runner-up to American Ryan Sipes
Australia’s Daniel Milner closed out the ISDE as outright runner-up to American Ryan Sipes

All up I think we can honestly say that Australia has the best enduro riders in the world and we as a nation can be proud of the way they rode and conducted themselves throughout the event.

Australia were the clear winners of the FIM Women’s World Trophy team competition
Australia were the clear winners of the FIM Women’s World Trophy team competition
World Trophy Team Overall

1. France – 21:08:30.76
2. Australia – 21:09:31.14
3. Spain – 21:18:57.52
4. Italy – 21:22:05.17
5. Great Britain – 21:31:14.14
6. Finland – 21:49:13.25
7. Germany – 22.01:46.71
8. Czech Republic – 22:03:19.92
9. Sweden – 22:23:17.01
10. Slovakia – 22:29:14.26

Delivering the victory for France in Kosice, Marc Bourgeois - Yamaha, Anthony Boissiere - Sherco, Loic Larrieu - Sherco, Antoine Basset - KTM, Jeremy Joly - KTM and Mathias Bellino
Delivering the victory for France in Kosice, Marc Bourgeois – Yamaha, Anthony Boissiere – Sherco, Loic Larrieu – Sherco, Antoine Basset – KTM, Jeremy Joly – KTM and Mathias Bellino
Junior Trophy Overall

1. Australia – 12:56:33.09
2. Sweden – 13:11:59.93
3. Italy – 13:23:17.17
4. France – 13:24:24.41
5. Great Britain – 13:26:33.72
6. Finland – 13:27:52.57
7. Mexico – 13:44:14.55
8. Czech Republic – 13:54:51.53
9. Slovakia – 14:01:18.07
10. Austria – 14:08:47.69

 

ISDE 2015 - Daniel Sanders and Tom Mason
ISDE 2015 – Daniel Sanders and Tom Mason
Women’s World Trophy Overall

1. Australia – 10:15:02.65
2. France – +55:53.73
3. Sweden – +1:15:20.98
4. Finland – +1:24:11.48
5. USA – +1:26:35.15

The Aussie Women spray the champagne on the ISDE podium
The Aussie Women spray the champagne on the ISDE podium
Individual Overall

1. Ryan Sipes – United States of America – Hus
2. Daniel Milner – Australia – Yam
3. Loic Larrieu – France – Sherco
4. Taylor Robert – United States of America – KTM
5. Matthew Phillips – Australia – KTM
6. Jaume Betriu – Spain – Hus
7. David Knight – Great Britain – KTM
8. Grant Baylor – United States of America – Yam
9. Beau Ralston – Australia – Yam
10. Tye Simmonds – Australia – KTM

USA's Ryan Sipes took the outright individual ISDE victory
USA’s Ryan Sipes took the outright individual ISDE victory

Dunlop