1 August 2015
Brits dominant at Lommel
Team UK smash Lommel at Belgian GP
The British riders simply took apart the opposition today in Belgium, with Shaun Simpson, Max Anstie, Brad Anderson and Jack Bintcliffe taking the chequered flag in their respective races at the Belgian GP
With the track as rough as ever, it was the Suzuki boys that got out in front in the MXGP qualifying race, Kevin Strijbos leading his rookie team mate Glen Coldenhoff into the first two laps with Jeremy Van Horebeek and Simpson in hot pursuit. The Scot soon pulled out his secret weapon, the massive quad jump at the end of the circuit, and leaped past Van Horebeek to take third.
Simpson's speed was vastly beyond anybody else on all of the circuit, soon getting past both Coldenhoff and Strijbos for the lead by lap four. Series leader Romain Febvre was pressing forward with almost as much pace, catching up with Simpson a lap later, but despite pushing, he could not get up with the British champion, the quad jump robbing the Frenchman of any advantage he might have gained on the rest of the circuit. By the final few laps, Febvre had fallen back clearly deciding that second was good enough for the day. Strijbos followed him home for a distant third with Coldenhoff and Van Horebeek making up the top five.
" There's plenty of bumps out there today", said Simpson after his win. " It's definitely roughing up nicely out there with all the different classes. Overall I enjoyed it - I didn't get the best start but you don't really need a good start here. When it's sandy you can make your passes so I came from about tenth to sixth in about for corners - that's just how it is in the sand. I'm really looking forward to tomorrow.
" I remembered from last year that the quad made a lot of difference, so I had it up my sleeve from practice and i just nailed it every lap. It puts you out of synch from where everybody else is landing so you get a smooth line to double out. But I think I'm strong enough everywhere else on the track too."
In the 250 class, Max Anstie continued the way he had left the circuit last year, rocketing out of the gate, taking the holeshot and never looking back. Pauls Jonass looked like he was going to mount a challenge for a while, but he faded a little and was taken by a resurgent Petar Petrov on the factory Kawasaki. It was a different story for series favourite's Valentin Guillod and Tim Gajser who both showed that maybe sand was not their strong suit. Gajser started the race back in twentieth place and showed very little pace as he progressed to an eventual eleventh, far less than he is capable of and vastly less than he needs to maintain his title hopes. Guillod fared slightly better, starting the race in fourth but a fall soon put pay to that and he dropped back into the pack. Worse was to come as he only lasted seven laps before pulling out of the race.
With Max checked out and riding superbly out front, the win was inevitable and after him it was the Bulgarian Petrov and Jonass that made the top three, fourth and fifth going to Brent Van Doninck and Jeremy Seewer.
Brad Anderson came to Lommel with a double win in the bag from Loket for the GL12 team, and a whole heap of expectation on his shoulders. But he certainly didn't make life easy for himself, starting the race way back in fifteenth place with Patrick Vos out in front. Mike Kras soon took over the lead on the third lap and must have though the win was in the bag. But he clearly hasn't much experience of racing with Brad, who had moved to sixth in six laps and to third five laps later. Kras withstood the pressure as Anderson moved to second behind him but in the end, the experience and determination of the two-time British champion won out. Anderson took the lead in the final stages of the moto and took the flag for win number three in the class. A classic Ando win and the Brits at Lommel simply loved it.
The other win for Team UK came in the EMX150 class, with Jack Bintcliffe leading every single lap of his race just like Anstie. Finnish rider Emil Weckman took second in the final lap and the wonderfully named Viking Lindstrom rounding off the podium.
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