Christophe Nambotin does the EnduroGP double in Hungary
Jamie McCanney took home the Enduro2 overall win
Matthew Phillips fourth overall in standings – Gardiner fourth in Women’s across both days
Claiming his first EnduroGP class win of 2017, Christophe Nambotin (KTM) was the rider to beat on day one of the Maxxis EnduroGP of Hungary where the Frenchman placed close to 22 seconds ahead of EnduroGP series leader Steve Holcombe (Beta) with Loic Larrieu rounding out the podium in third.
In the Enduro 2 class Nambotin’s team-mate Josep Garcia (KTM) claimed his fourth win of the championship to come out on top of a close fought battle with Eero Remes (TM) and Jamie McCanney (Yamaha).
Just as he did on day one, KTM’s Christophe Nambotin claimed EnduroGP class victory to complete a perfect weekend in Paradfürdo for the Frenchman. Pushed every step of the way by team-mate Nathan Watson, Nambo placed less than five seconds ahead of the Brit with Loic Larrieu (Yamaha) a further three-and-a-half seconds further back in third. EnduroGP championship leader Steve Holcombe (Beta) placed fourth.
In the Enduro 2 class Jamie McCanney (Yamaha) secured his first win of the season, finishing on top of yet another hard-fought battle with Josep Garcia (KTM). Eero Remes (TM) finished third.
EnduroGP – Day 1
Showing exactly why he is a multiple former world champion, Nambotin topped the first two tests extreme and enduro during the opening lap, going on to top a further three more special tests to win by close to 22 seconds.
It was a good day. No mistakes in the Super Test on Friday night and then a good first lap today. I felt good, no mistakes, and everything went well. Let’s see what tomorrow is like. There is one main line on all of the tests, so it’s harder to make any advantage now. But of course I will push hard to try and win on day two.
With four riders all battling for the runner-up position it was eventually Steve Holcombe who secured the runner-up position. Second to Nambo on the day’s opening two tests, Holcombe lost a little time at the end of the first lap and the start of lap two, but pushed hard towards the end of the day to claim second and maintain his EnduroGP championship lead.
With two-stroke riders placing first and second, Loic Larrieu (Yamaha) ended day one as the highest placed four-stroke rider in third. Just three-and-a-half seconds behind Holcombe, Frenchman Larrieu in turn finished close to eight seconds ahead of Matt Phillips (Sherco).
Despite not making the strongest of starts to the day, Nathan Watson posted the fastest time in the EnduroGP class during the final two tests and in doing so placed just 0.50 of a second behind Phillips.
Privateer rider Cristobal Guerrero (Yamaha) rounded out the top six with Mathias Bellino placing seventh on his return to the series. Injured just days before the series opener in Finland, with virtually no time back on a bike ahead of the GP of Hungary Bellino ended the day tired but pleased to be back racing.
With less than 10 seconds separating the top three finishers in the EnduroGP class on day two of the GP of Hungary, Christophe Nambotin (KTM) once again showed himself as the rider to beat.
Topping five of the day’s 10 special tests the Frenchman set the pace for much of the first half of the day, but with the short, dry special tests affording no rider an easy time, Nambo’ found himself under constant pressure from team-mate Nathan Watson. Doing exactly what he needed to do in order to take the win, Nambo’ rounded out the day mistake free to earn a back-to-back victory.
“I rode well this weekend, I feel much better than I did at the start of the season and I really enjoyed this GP. It was important to have a good first lap on day one, which I managed to do. The team have put in a lot of work, so to reward them with victory is really good. Honestly, I found the last lap on day two a little bit difficult. I had to push as hard as I could on every special test to stay ahead of Nathan, and in this heat it wasn’t easy. I didn’t have any crashes today, just some small mistakes. It feels great to be back winning, so I hope I can continue in this way. There are three or four riders riding very well in the EnduroGP class so it looks like there will be many more close battles this season.”
Piling the pressure on his team-mate throughout the day, Nathan Watson (KTM) delivered his best performance of the series to date to claim a well-deserved runner-up result. In doing so he showed the kind of form that saw him challenge for the Enduro1 title in 2016.
“I’ve had a rough time of things during the first three GPs of the year. I’ve had so little time on a bike that I’ve not been able to get any momentum behind my training or racing. But this weekend things finally started falling into place. Since the GP of Italy I’ve been able to train and ride more and although I’ve still got some work to do things are definitely improving. Day one didn’t start so well – I felt a little rusty on the special tests when there were no lines on them. But I knew that I had the speed to do well and things improved test-by-test. Day two started well and I battled with Nambotin all day. I really enjoyed it, and I hope that things go as well in Greece next weekend.”
Just as he did on day one Loic Larrieu (Yamaha) also delivered the goods on day two, placing less than four seconds adrift of Watson. With EnduroGP championship leader Steve Holcombe (Beta) unable to find the form that saw him place second on day one, the Brit eventually finished fourth and just one place ahead of his team-mate Alex Salvini.
“I was hoping for two top three results, but I’m certainly happy with second and fourth. I was really looking forward to the GP of Hungary – a place I’d not raced before. It was a really good, really enjoyable race. Maybe if the rain we were expecting had arrived it might have suited me a little better, but the extreme and enduro tests were really cool. The only thing was because the tests were quite short it was a really fine line between not pushing hard enough and pushing too hard. The first day went great. I didn’t go all-out from the start, so I had to push hard during the second and third laps. Nambotin was riding really well, so to finish second to him was great. I hoped for a little more on day two, but I didn’t want to push too hard and risk crashing, which was easy to do. I felt pretty good, I just needed to be a few seconds faster on each test. All in all it’s been another very good GP for me, now I’m looking forward Greece.”
With Cristobal Guerrero (Yamaha) sixth, Jaume Betriu (KTM) seventh, Giacomo Redondi (Honda) finished eighth and ahead of Matt Phillips (Sherco) and Mathias Bellino (Husqvarna).
Steve Holcombe (Beta) continues to lead the EnduroGP championship standings on 167 points ahead of Loic Larrieu (Yamaha) on 146 with Christophe Nambotin (KTM) third on 141 points.
EnduroGP – Day 2 Results
Christophe NAMBOTIN – France
Nathan WATSON – United Kingdom
Loïc LARRIEU – France
Steve HOLCOMBE – United Kingdom
Alex SALVINI – Italy
Cristobal GUERRERO RUIZ – Spain
Jaume BETRIU – Spain
Giacomo REDONDI – Italy
Matthew PHILLIPS – Australia
Mathias BELLINO – France
Ramon QUER MOLGO – Spain
Deny PHILIPPAERTS – Italy
Kornel NEMETH – Hungary
Hollo BENCE – Hungary
EnduroGP Championship Standings
Steve Holcombe (Beta) 167
Loic Larrieu (Yamaha) 146
Christophe Nambotin (KTM) 141
Matthew Phillips (Sherco) 132
Nathan Watson (KTM) 117
Enduro 2 – Day 1
For the fourth time this season Josep Garcia (KTM) topped the Enduro 2 class, having been pushed extremely hard by both Eero Remes (TM) and Jamie McCanney (Yamaha). Throughout the day the three riders were separated by just hundredths of a second, with Remes the rider who led going into the final test. But despite suffering his third fall of the day it was Garcia who claimed the win.
I knew that I would either win or crash in the last test, and I did both, I gave it everything and although I made a small mistake I managed to win. But it was so close all through the day. Jamie and Eero were both really fast, so I had to push hard. Sometimes I pushed too hard, but I had to. In the end it was a good day.
With just over five seconds separating the top three, Remes claimed the runner-up spot with Jamie McCanney third. Some 25 seconds behind Jamie, Davide Guarneri (Honda) claimed his best result of the championship to date in fourth. Fifth went to Pascal Rauchenecker (Husqvarna).
Enduro 2 – Day 1 Results
Josep Garcia (KTM) 47:27.72
Eero Remes (TM) 47:29.52
Jamie McCanney (Yamaha) 47:32.96
Davide Guarneri (Honda) 47:53.64
Pascal Rauchenecker (Husqvarna) 48:00.84…
Enduro 2 – Day 2
Finally claiming the winning result he’d been so close to securing at earlier GPs, Jamie McCanney (Yamaha) topped the Enduro 2 class by an eventual margin on 11 seconds. Disappointed at having failed to stop Josep Garcia (KTM) from winning on day one, on day two Jamie remained mistake free to earn 25 hard-fought championship points.
“We’ve been battling for the win since the start of the year and it always went down to the last test. I’m really happy I managed to make it happen on the second day of racing here in Hungary. The event started quite well for me and I showed the speed was there. We had a good battle throughout the day with Garcia and Remes and it all went down to the line. I rode more on the cautious side so I ended up getting third on day one. Finishing day one less than five seconds away from a potential win gave me the extra motivation to give it all I had on day two. I pushed hard from the start on Sunday and managed to come out on top. It’s been a tough GP and I’m happy I kept it steady and got some good points for the championship.”
All but level on time going into the final enduro test, Garcia wasn’t able to repeat his day one win and claim a double Enduro 2 class win due to a crash. Nevertheless, the young Spaniard claimed second ahead of Eero Remes (TM) who eventually placed 21 seconds behind and 33 seconds adrift of McCanney.
“It’s been a very good GP for me. I liked the conditions very much and although I made three mistakes during the first day I arrived at the final special test just a few seconds behind Eero Remes. I pushed hard and managed to win. I was competitive again on day two but I made a mistake on one of the extreme tests when I was leading, so I was behind by six or seven seconds. I had to push really hard to catch back up because Jamie McCanney was very fast. Unfortunately, I crashed again in the final enduro test and finished second. It would have been great to win again like on day one, but I am very pleased with the way the GP of Hungary has gone for me.”
Danny McCanney (Husqvarna) looked set to end the day on the podium but a disappointing final enduro test saw him place fourth, five seconds down on Remes.
“It’s been a mixed weekend for me. I made a mistake right at the start of the first extreme test on day one and then again on the first enduro test, where I went over the handlebars. I wasn’t really able to recover from those mistakes. Day two was generally much better, I started off really strong. The tests were all so fast and short that it was almost impossible to make up any time. In the final enduro test it was all or nothing to get on the podium and I made a silly mistake and ended up fourth.”
Jonathan Barragan (Gas Gas) put in a strong ride on day two to claim fifth ahead of Davide Guarneri (Honda), Manuel Monni (TM), Pascal Rauchenecker (Husqvarna), Thomas Oldrati (Husqvarna) and Henric Stigell (KTM).
“It wasn’t the best GP for me, but it started very well when I got the fastest time in the Super Test. That was my first fastest time there. The first day started pretty well but I had two bad crashes and ended the day feeling quite beaten up. I kept pushing and finished fifth, which wasn’t too bad. I made mistakes and crashed again on day two so I finished eighth. Not the best weekend but I’m still fourth in the E2 championship and looking forward to return to Greece.”
Josep Garcia (KTM) remains at the top of the Enduro 2 championship standings on 176 points with Eero Remes (TM) second on 165 points and Jamie McCanney (Yamaha) just one point behind in third.
Enduro 2 – Day 2 Results
Jamie McCanney (Yamaha) 47:13.91
Josep Garcia (KTM) 47:25.12
Eero Remes (TM) 47:47.00
Danny McCanney (Husqvarna) 47:52.07…
Enduro 2 Standings
Josep Garcia (KTM) 176
Eero Remes (TM) 165
Jamie McCanney (Yamaha) 164
Pascal Rauchenecker (Husqvarna) 136
Daniel McCanney (Husqvarna) 110
Enduro Junior – Day 1
In the Enduro Junior class Brad Freeman (Beta) proved to be the rider to beat throughout the day. Fast on the second day of the GPs of Italy and Spain, in Hungary Brad started strongly and remained fast and consistent during every special test.
At the end of the day he finished 25 seconds ahead of Swede Mikael Persson (Yamaha) and his team-mate Matteo Cavallo (Beta) in third. Enduro Junior championship leader Davide Soreca (Honda) placed eighth.
It was a really good day for me, I really wanted to do well on the first day as I struggled to find my speed on day one in Spain and Italy. From the Super Test I managed to keep things moving in a good direction. I hope I can do the same again on day two.
Andrea Verona (TM) and Ruy Barbosa (Husqvarna) were the two riders that battled at the head of the 125cc Youth class. Verona eventually claimed the win, finishing just under 10 seconds ahead of Ruy. Third went to Frenchman Leo le Quere (TM).
Enduro Junior – Day 2
In the Enduro Junior class a two-rider battle raged throughout the day as Mikael Persson (Yamaha) looked to claim his first win of the season while Brad Freeman (Beta) hoped to claim the double Enduro Junior class win. Neck-and-neck going into the final enduro test it was Freeman who emerged as the class winner, with a test time that would have seen him fourth in the EnduroGP class.
“I had to work so hard today, hats off to Mikael, he was really fast. When he started winning test after test at the start of the day I was a little worried to be honest. But I kept pushing and things worked out great. I thought that if I rode like I did on day one I’d be ok today. But I quickly realised that wasn’t going to be the case. I’m pleased because I worked my way forwards and got myself into a position to challenge for the win going into the final enduro test. I had a good lead over third, so I went for it. I had a really good run and I’m so, so pleased to have won and got my first double class win.”
With Persson second, third went to Matteo Cavallo (Beta) with championship leader Davide Soreca (Honda) sixth. Soreca sits at the top of the EJ standings with 162 points, Mikael Persson is second on 141 with Freeman third on 140.
Enduro Women’s – Day 1
Maria Franke (KTM) ended day one at the top of the Women’s class results, just two-and-a-half seconds ahead of Laia Sanz (KTM). With the two competitors in a class of their own, mistakes from Sanz during the second lap hampered her hopes of challenging for the win.
Third went to Jane Daniels (Husqvarna) with Jessica Gardiner (Yamaha) and Mireia Badia (Husqvarna) fourth and fifth.
Enduro Women – Day 1 Results
Maria Franke (KTM) 29:31:72
Laia Sanz (KTM) 29:34:25
Jane Daniels (Husqvarna) 30:27:16
Jess Gardiner (Yamaha) 31:06:65
Mireia Badia (Husqvarna) 31:24:75
Enduro Women’s – Day 2
Turning the tables on day one Women’s class winner Maria Franke (KTM), Laia Sanz (KTM) claimed her third day win of the championship to date with a much-improved performance. Winning all but one of the day’s special tests, Laia placed 33 seconds ahead of her German rival.
With Sanz and Franke claiming the top two positions on the podium, third went to Jane Daniels (Husqvarna). Laia Sanz holds the lead in the Women’s championship on 97 points with Franke on 91 and Daniels on 80.
“Day one was difficult for me but I’m pleased that I got the win on day two. I made too many mistakes on day one, that was it. The race days were short so it was hard to make up any lost time. I removed those mistakes on day two and rode like I know I can.”
In the 125cc Youth class Andrea Verona (TM) and Leo le Querre (TM) battled it out for the win with Verona finishing 18 seconds ahead. Third went to Ruy Barbos (Husqvarna).
Enduro Women – Day 2 Results
Laia Sanz (KTM) 29:27:94
Maria Franke (KTM) 30:01:24
Jane Daniels (Husqvarna) 30:50:06
Jess Gardiner (Yamaha) 31:56:72
Mireia Badia (Husqvarna) 32:00:56
Enduro Women Standings
Laia Sanz (KTM) 97
Maria Franke (KTM) 91
Jane Daniels (Husqvarna) 80
Jessica Gardiner (Yamaha) 69
Mireia Badia (Husqvarna) 48
The EnduroGP World Championship now heads to Grevena in Greece on July 1-2.
MCNEWS.COM.AU is a specialist on-line resource that provides motorcycle news for motorcyclists. MCNews covers all areas of interest for the motorcycling public including news, reviews and comprehensive racing coverage.