Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Grand Prix of Portugal ? Rider Comments

The Grand Prix of Portugal once again produced great racing and amazing changes. Just like last year Kenny Roczen got a little unlucky in Portugal and left the circuit in the back of an ambulance. He will be back in Spain and you can expect him to be ready to fight for the MX2 red plate. In MX1 the Desalle versus Cairoli battle continues.

Clement Desalle

“It was good to win and I’m happy with the result but I’m not that pleased with some mistakes I made. Tony was getting close to me both times but I stayed focussed and didn’t want to crash. I wasn’t tense and I knew what speed I could do. It was good to get more experience of being at the front and learning from the pressure! I had to pass Rui and Bobryshev in the second moto but I took my time because I didn’t want to have to take any risks. I looked for opportunities and there wasn’t many because the track was very rough and stony. I am still leading the Championship, but we will think about this more at the end of the season!”

Jeffrey Herlings

?I?m six points ahead of Kenny now and I have to keep it like that. It?s going to be really hard because Ken is in very good shape and he?s really fast, but all in all it was a good weekend for me. I?ll try to be cool, that?s the main thing I have to do to hold onto the red plate. It will be hard but I?m looking forward to the races next weekend and I hope to keep it.?

Antonio Cairoli

?I like this track a lot. I have won four GPs and 11 motos here during my career, so actually tis one of my favorite GPs. But today it was pretty hard. It hasn?t rained here for a long time and there were a lot of strange bumps on the track where you can make a lot of mistakes.

Rui Gon�alves,

?The second moto, to lead the race for nearly 10 laps in front of my home crowd was a great feeling. Every time I came past they were going crazy. The first moto could have been better but I am happy with 4th overall and felt that I showed my speed in the second moto. This weekend has been pretty full-on with the home media and all the fans but I have enjoyed every minute of it!?

Evgeny Bobryshev,

?I am really happy to go back to the podium and really happy with the way I rode today. After a crash in the Qualifying Race my aim was to be consistent and it has paid off. It has been a good event for me and I have improved in the championship as well, so overall it has been a really positive weekend. I look to carry it on next weekend in Spain and would like to be back on the podium again.?

Steven Frossard:

It was a bit difficult this weekend with my finger because the track had many hard bumps. It was hard for me on the downhills and also in the waves. I took a really good start in the first moto and went from fifth to second. I tried to catch Desalle but then Cairoli arrived and he was faster. I had been a bit too aggressive and was getting some arm-pump. It wasnt easy to ride smooth and quickly after that. Anyway it was a good heat for me. I was a bit too tense at the start of the second race because I had the bad launch from Saturday in my head. I made a mess of it and tried to fight back but after twenty-five minutes I saw David crash and decided to consolidate, not go too crazy and focus on making the finish.

David Philippaerts:

Im very disappointed. I tried to push today but the track was very difficult and if you made a mistake then you paid for it and I did. I took the outside line to make the triple in the first moto and found Goncalves who had changed his line when I was in the air. There was not much that could be done but it was a big crash. In the next race I made the little jump down the hill but I lost the front end, like I did in France. My arm needed a few stitches and I have some pain in my ribs but it could have been worse.

Steve Ramon:

“One bad race and one not so bad. In the first moto my start was OK but in the waves section around the back I made a mistake. I was going on the outside to get some speed to do the first double but somebody came up the inside and just blocked the face of the jump. I went sideways and it was a big one. I stretched my groin and it was pretty painful. The second moto was better but the track was really tricky. Nagl went down in front of me and so did Philippaerts. You had to be really focussed. I tried to close to gap to Bobryshev in front but I started to get stomach cramps near the end. I don’t know why; maybe because of the impact from the earlier crash. It was tough to handle and that was it for today. I did my best. The track next week will be completely new for me. I haven’t even seen a picture so it will be interesting.”

Ken De Dycker

?It was quite good out there. I didn?t feel tired this week and came through the GP well. I couldn?t get a rhythm going in the first moto to push hard. The second moto was much better and if you can find the lines here then things get much easier. The track was rough. The results were an improvement on France and I hope we can keep on going up.??

?Shaun Simpson

?I have not been on the pace this weekend. My starts weren?t so bad, but I lacked a bit of speed and energy. The track was very one-line. The soil was weird. It had been prepared well, but it ended up being ?follow the leader?, there was another line option, but it wasn?t faster. You had to make positions by scratching plastic a little bit. I?ve gained a place in the championship; that?s not much, but at least its something. We will work towards next week now and try to keep smiling!?

Jake Nicholls:

?Qualifying went really well and I felt good after the short sprint. We had changed the bike completely after practice and it made a massive difference. The track was tricky this weekend and in the first moto I got stuck in a little rhythm and couldn?t shake myself out of it. When someone passes me I usually try to tag on the back to attack again or learn from them but I wasn?t able to do it this time. I was disappointed and a bit fatigued. I gave myself a bit of a talking-to between races and the second one was better. I went with the guys from the beginning and felt faster. Again I had that little dip at mid-race distance ? and that is something I need to fix ? but it wasn?t too bad and quite solid.?

Gautier Paulin:

I really feel good on the bike now, aggressive and fast and physically I can train and prepare like I want. Im just missing the good starts now to get right at the front and be fighting for the lead. The championship will change and it is impossible to say what will happen, if you see today Ken had a crash and did not finish. I hope we can be strong and consistent for the rest of the season and try to regain a few of the points we lost. I am looking forward to being stronger every week.

Zach Osborne:

Yesterday I thought two top ten finishes would be a good result. I got off to a good start and overall made some decent points today. I was able to charge the whole way in the first race but in the second after twenty-five minutes I was struggling to hold onto what I had. I tried to go with Gautier as long as I could to separate myself from Tonus; that would have given me second overall but third is not bad. We made some modifications to the bike after St Jean and they worked for me with two good starts. I need to get strong now for Spain next week.

Arnaud Tonus:

Im quite happy with the GP and especially the second moto. Saturday was also good with third in the qualification race. To almost have the holeshot yesterday was a big improvement for me! The track was tough and it was hard to find a good setting with the suspension and tyres because the ground was changing with every lap and it was slick and bumpy. I felt confident so I was disappointed with that big crash in the first triple step-up. After that it was difficult because I had broken the front brake and it wasnt working any more but by finishing eleventh I saved some points. In the second moto I got better and better with my rhythm and in the end I was close to Paulin for third. It feels like a long time since I had a good feeling at a GP so Im happy.

Christophe Charlier:

Butron crashed into me yesterday and I hurt my finger so it wasnt the best start to the grand prix and at the beginning of the first race I couldnt believe it. I just rode as hard as I could and was really happy with the places I made. With a good start in the second one I kept a good pace and although I was on my own I was in positions where I think I should be.

Harri Kullas:

We need to change something because my starts were really bad. In the first race I was around fifteenth and made a mistake and crashed. I came from last to tenth, which was OK but Im not happy with yet another mistake. In the second moto I made the triple but came out hitting the high wall there and stalled the bike. I was twelfth but came back to ninth. Too many crashes in the last races and Id making it hard for myself.



Mark Barnett Jonathan Barragan Andrea Bartolini Willy Bauer Jean Michel Bayle

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