The opening day of action of the MXGP of Russia was a bittersweet one for Tim Gajser, who excelled aboard his Honda CRF450RW in free and timed practice, before a first-turn coming together in the qualifying race ruined his chances of late-afternoon success.
It was love at first sight with Orlyonok for the Team HRC rider, as Gajser topped the timesheets in his first-ever session on the spectacular hard-pack track located on the shores of the Black Sea. The two-time motocross world champion did even better during timed practice as he put 1.050secs between himself and second placed Jeffrey Herlings, to come out on top once more.
As the qualifying race got underway, Gajser had a promising start but found himself in the middle of Herlings and Febvre when entering turn one, with no chance of avoiding a coming together with the latter. Tim went down but quickly remounted and set off in chase of the pack. From way back, Gajser bridged the gap with the riders ahead, making his way past a good number of rivals, while setting impressive lap-times despite the traffic encountered.
Towards the end of the encounter, Gajser was running 14th and closing in on Coldenhoff, before a small tumble on the hairpin leading to the final section cost him a few seconds – although no position was lost. MXGP action will resume tomorrow morning at 10:45 local time (GMT +3) for the 15-minute warm up, which will be followed by the two races at 14:15 and 17:10.
|1||Herlings Jeffrey||84||NDL||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||23:42.878|
|2||Lieber Julien||33||BEL||Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing||Kawasaki||+1.513|
|3||Van Horebeek Jeremy||89||BEL||Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team||Yamaha||+3.211|
|4||Desalle Clement||25||BEL||Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing||Kawasaki||+4.042|
|5||Cairoli Antonio||222||ITA||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||+4.729|
|6||Seewer Jeremy||91||SWI||Wilvo Yamaha MXGP||Yamaha||+7.579|
|7||Nagl Max||12||GER||TM Racing Factory Team||TM||+9.940|
|8||Anstie Max||99||GBR||Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing||Husqvarna||+12.027|
|9||Lupino Alessandro||77||ITA||Gebben V Venrooy Kawasaki||Kawasaki||+13.161|
|10||Paulin Gautier||21||FRA||Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing||Husqvarna||+16.580|
|11||Febvre Romain||461||FRA||Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team||Yamaha||+19.069|
|12||Coldenhoff Glenn||259||NDL||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||+24.321|
|13||Paturel Benoit||6||FRA||Gebben V Venrooy Kawasaki||Kawasaki||+27.552|
|14||Gajser Tim||243||SLO||Team HRC - MXGP||Honda||+31.711|
|15||Bobryshev Evgeny||777||RUS||BOS GP||Suzuki||+34.732|
|16||Monticelli Ivo||128||ITA||iFly JK Racing||Yamaha||+46.312|
|17||Butron Jose||17||SPA||Marchetti Racing Team KTM||KTM||+49.910|
|18||Petrov Ivan||142||BUL||Husqvarna 8Biano Racing||Husqvarna||+51.688|
|19||Desprey Maxime||141||FRA||Gebben V Venrooy Kawasaki||Kawasaki||+55.091|
|20||Strijbos Kevin||22||BEL||Standing Construct KTM||KTM||+56.460|