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Strijbos takes breakthrough Agueda victory

22 April 2007

Kevin Strijbos eased the accumulated pressure of two years without a win by beating championship leader Josh Coppins for overall victory at the Grand Prix of Portugal.

Strijbos' second ever MX1 grand prix triumph came after the Belgian had finished second to Coppins in race one, but then beat the Rinaldi Yamaha rider for victory in race two. Coppins, riding with an injured left foot and groin, caught and overtook the Suzuki star in the deciding moto, but a backward glance soon after seemed to spark a fire in Kevin and he subsequently re-passed the New Zealander before disappearing into the distance.

KTM's David Philippaerts was third in race one, with fellow rookie Sebastien Pourcel then taking that position in race two - but a fifth for Philippaerts gave him third overall.

Meanwhile, two much more dramatic MX2 races saw championship leader Antonio Cairoli pass reigning title holder Christophe Pourcel to win race one, with KTM young gun Tommy Searle third.

Both Pourcel and Cairoli then fell during race two, Pourcel while leading; Cairoli recovered to take the race and overall victory while Pourcel failed to finish. In the Kawasaki star's absence, countrymen Nicolas Aubin took second and Pascal Leuret third - but a sixth place for Searle gave him second overall, behind Cairoli and ahead of Leuret, on the overall GP classification.

All of which means that Coppins now holds a reduced 19 point lead over Strijbos in the MX1 championship standings, while Cairoli has extended his advantage to 44 over Pourcel in MX2 after round four of 15.


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