Team HRC’s Tim Gajser continued his good recent form with a second-placed finish in the MXGP of Italy qualification race, held at the historic Maggiora track in the northern region of Italy. Teammate Mitch Evans, had to come through the field to finish 12th, but there was very little passing elsewhere at this hillside venue.

With a threatening weather forecast hanging over the facility all week, the rain held off for qualification day, leaving the track under-prepared and creating a flat surface on a circuit that is already traditionally hard to pass at. Both Team HRC riders gave themselves the best chance of good starts in the race by getting second (Gajser) and fifth (Evans) gate-picks after timed practice, but while Gajser was able to take advantage, Evans was caught up in some first lap carnage and had start from almost dead last.

Rounding the first bend in second place, the #243 tried his hardest to make the pass happen on the first lap, when positions are easier to take, but he was denied and instead had to settle into a roost-dodging mission for the rest of the moto. He did come close on a couple more occasions but there just weren’t the line-options available and despite setting the fastest lap of the race, he had to be content with second place, with the hope he can reel off holeshots when the gate drops tomorrow.

While Gajser was battling up front, Evans was able to make some passes down the field, to move up from 22nd to 12th, after a crash involving another rider at the top of the hill on lap one. The Honda CRF450R rider was one of the few guys to make multiple passes in this MXGP field, with only two passes taking place inside the top 10 the whole moto. This highlights the importance of the start tomorrow, although conditions could be much different by the time their motos begin.

Rain is forecast overnight and for parts of Sunday, which could have a big impact on how the hard-pack surface looks. The riders will get a chance to see this in their warm-up session at 10:45am before the two motos begin at 14:15 and 17:10, in this seventh round of the 2022 MXGP World Championship.

Tim Gajser 243

Second is a good result in qualifying, but I am a little frustrated I couldn’t make the pass happen for the lead. The track was very flat and one-lined and that made things very difficult to try and set up a move, and even though I set the fastest lap, I couldn’t quite get past him. Still, I know that if I get out the gate well tomorrow, I have good speed and win the races.

Mitch Evans 43

Unfortunately it was another case of first lap problems, making things difficult for myself. I got involved in an incident at the top of the hill and had to pick up my bike and try to get back into the race. I was practically last but knew I had plenty of time to recover and pass as many guys as I could, so that’s what I set about doing. It wasn’t easy to make the moves but slowly I moved through the field and even on the last lap I was able to make a final pass to finish in 12th. I know the start is critical tomorrow so that’s where I really need to shine and I’ll be trying my hardest to make that happen.

Marcus Pereira de Freitas

HRC General Manager - MXGP

We know that Maggiora can be a tough place to make passes and that’s exactly what happened for Tim. He was got out of the gate well and was positioned second straight-away, but despite pressuring the whole moto, he couldn’t make the pass. It’ll be interesting to see how they prepare the track as the weather doesn’t look so good, so maybe they can rip it a bit more and that should create some more lines. Overall though, it was a strong ride and he is still in a very good position to continue his win-streak. For Mitch, everything was good from him, except for the first lap. He is showing good speed and seemed to enjoy practice, posting the fifth fastest time in the timed session but having to come through the field on this track isn’t ideal. We know that if he can get a good start, he’ll be able to run with the top guys and that’s what we are trying to achieve tomorrow.

MXGP 2022
Qualifying Round 7   Italy

Qualifying

Cloudy
Air Temp
15°C
Track Cond
Hard Pack
Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Constructor Time/Gap
1 Renaux Maxime 959 FRA Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team Yamaha 24:41.265
2 Gajser Tim 243 SLO Team HRC - MXGP Honda 0:00.916
3 Seewer Jeremy 91 SWI Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team Yamaha 0:03.237
4 Fernandez Ruben 70 SPA Honda 114 Motorsports Honda 0:11.549
5 Jonass Pauls 41 LAT Standing Construct GasGas Factory Racing Team GasGas 0:15.912
6 Coldenhoff Glenn 259 NDL Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team Yamaha 0:17.609
7 Vlaanderen Calvin 10 NDL Gebben Van Venrooy Yamaha Racing Yamaha 0:18.397
8 Van Horebeek Jeremy 89 BEL Beta SDM Corse MX Team Beta 0:20.427
9 Forato Alberto 303 ITA SM Action Racing Team Yuasa Battery GasGas 0:23.258
10 Charlier Christophe 23 FRA Wildcard Rider Yamaha 0:28.944
11 Tixier Jordi 911 FRA JT911 KTM Racing Team KTM 0:32.721
12 Evans Mitch 43 AUS Team HRC - MXGP Honda 0:34.337
13 Watson Ben 919 GBR Kawasaki Racing Team MXGP Kawasaki 0:34.969
14 Bogers Brian 189 NDL Standing Construct Husqvarna Factory Racing Team Husqvarna 0:43.168
15 van Doninck Brent 32 BEL Riley Racing Yamaha 0:49.874
16 Lupino Alessandro 77 ITA Beta SDM Corse MX Team Beta 0:52.778
17 Jacobi Henry 29 GER JM Honda Racing Honda 0:53.110
18 Östlund Alvin 161 SWE JK Racing Yamaha Active Yamaha 1:01.988
19 Philippaerts David 15 ITA Wildcard Rider Kawasaki 1:06.448
20 Zaragoza Jorge 99 SPA Wildcard Rider Honda 1:08.282
Location Information

Via Fornaci, 25, 28014 Maggiora, Novara, Italy - View in Google Maps