Clement Desalle of the Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team had his most frustrating weekend of the season in the Swiss round of the FIM World MXGP Motocross Championship at Frauenfeld.
The Belgian’s weekend of woe began at the first turn of the qualifying race as he was involved in a collision and had to chase through the pack to earn even twelfth choice of gate for the GP motos. A poor start in the opening GP moto saw him storm the leaderboard to finish tenth in the high-quality field and hopes of better fortune in race two as he round the first turn fourth were soon dimmed as he inadvertently touch the gear shift a few corners further, selecting a false neutral and again finding himself at the back of the pack. By the chequered flag he had advanced to eleventh. He remains just three points away from third in the championship standings with four rounds of the series remaining.
Tommy Searle of Monster Energy DRT Kawasaki raced for the first time this year in a season devastated by injury and came through the baptism of fire with flying colours to twice score points in sixteenth and fifteenth position at the end of two tough 35 minute GP motos. After such a long time out of racing it was inevitable that he could not immediately run the pace of the leaders all moto, but he made two top ten starts to run with the factory riders for several laps before riding to two secure finishes.
Clément Desalle: “Nothing went as I would have liked this weekend, but that’s part of racing. In the qualifying race I was involved in a crash with some other riders at the first turn and could only get the twelfth gate pick. In the first moto I had a bad start but recovered from seventeenth to tenth; it’s never easy to pass, and even more difficult now to come back into the top ten with so many good riders in the class. My second start was much better; I was in the top five but in one of the first few corners I touched my gear change and selected neutral so everyone passed me! I was nearly last but came back to eleventh; when you’re in the pack like that it’s tough as you can’t really choose the best lines and you can’t find your rhythm. It’s a weekend to forget.”
Tommy Searle: “It was a tough weekend, but also a good one for my comeback racing. I knew that it would be tough and wasn’t expecting great results; I don’t really feel ready to race as I have only practiced for two weeks before coming here. It’s probably the least ready that I have been for years; after my knee injury I was feeling good on the bike until I broke my hand. I have only been able to ride a few times before coming here but I scored an eleventh yesterday in qualification, then a fifteenth and a sixteenth today with some good starts. That’s not so bad. The team has been working hard; I believe I’m not too far off and I’m still one of the guys who has a good speed so it gives me confidence that we’re working in the right direction.”