Pichon is back on the first step of the podium !

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Eleven months after his last win in Teutschenthal (Germany) and eight months after his serious knee injury in Gaildorf (Germany), Mickaël Pichon got his first GP win this weekend in Agueda (Portugal).

The third GP of the season was finally sunny, and the track conditions were really good for the races. Two men dominated the MX1 races: Stefan Everts and Mickaël Pichon. Both had pretty good start in each race, but Everts was the fastest in action in the first one and despite Pichon assaults the Belgian champion won it. Taking another holeshot in the second race, Everts was passed straight away by Pichon who pushed and finally won the heat and the Grand Prix. Despite horrible starts Cedric Melotte got a final podium; Joel Smets might got it, but he crashed at the end of the first race (he was fourth and finished eleventh) and then saw his engine stopped in the second one (he was second after two laps behind Pichon). Steve Ramon and Kenneth Gundersen both crashed in the second heat but finished fourth and fifth, but Paul Cooper who hit Gundersen’s bike was taken to the hospital with a broken collarbone. Third of the second heat, Joshua Coppins retired in the first one; he came back from last to eleventh after a crash in the first lap, but a damaged tank in the crash forced him to retire two laps to the end as he lost fuel and couldn’t finish the race.

The MX2 race was similar to the MX1 as two guys also dominated the event: Ben Townley and Stephen Sword. Townley took an easy win in the first moto, but in the second he was unable to catch Sword who got his first heat win. Consistent since the beginning of the season Sword is now tie with Townley in the championship, followed by De Reuver who finished third in the GP. Marc was fast on this track but did a couple of small mistakes in the first heat and had some troubles to find a good rhythm in the second. Consistent this week end Carl Nunn and Antonio Cairoli respectively fourth and fifth got their best overall result since a long time, while Tyla Rattray suffered from terrible starts but came back to sixth overall. Former world champions Alessio Chiodi and Andrea Bartolini (who crashed in the first moto) scored more points than Mickael Maschio, who got bad starts and crashed in the second heat.


Ben Townley (winner of the first MX2 heat). “I had a really good start, I knew it was important today as it would be difficult to pass. Marc was pushing behind me but I rode consistent and when he made a mistake I rode safe and kept energy for the second race. I had some troubles this week, I had a sore back and was sick yesterday, I had a really hard time. It’s better today, and thanks to the promoter the racing conditions were good”.


Stefan Everts (winner of the first MX1 heat). “ I had a good start and took the lead, but when Pichon came second I did a couple of mistakes and he came closer. It was a tough fight untills the finish line, and the lappers didn’t help me. It’s the same trouble every weekend, I have no problems with my start, my riding, my speed, but I’ve with the lappers as most of them ignore the blue flag. It’s really awesome to ride on this track, they just need to work in the future on the possibility to have different lines on it”.


Stephen Sword (winner of the second MX2 heat). “This is my first GP win in my career, and hopefully I can get many more. Another one podium result, as I finished second overall, is good for the championship. In the second heat I had a really good start and that makes the difference. I tried to do a couple of good laps but Ben (Townley) closed the gap; I stayed focused on my lines, and Ben got a little bit tired I think. This winter I’ve been working really hard, and so did the team so now the good results are coming. I just hope to have many more”.


Mickael Pichon (winner of the second MX1 heat). “Nobody can imagine how happy I am. It’s been a long time since I won a GP, and I trained so hard, it was so difficult to come back at a high level. There’s so many people I want to thanks, the doctor’s who put me back on my feet in the best way, the team who work really hard for me, my family, Jacky Vimond who is with me this year. Nothing can be better than today, especially after Bellpuig where I was unlucky. But I’ve many people around me, all those people were able to keep me motivated even after a bad weekend. I came here to win, I like this track, I wasn’t riding so smooth in the first heat but in the second one it was much better and I could control Stefan”.


Info Youthstream – Photo (C) Mx2k.com, A. Hodgkinson

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