Collecting top three results during the 2018 edition of the Lacapelle Marival International MX, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing riders have wrapped up their pre-season racing activities on a positive note. The ideal warm-up for the fast approaching 2018 FIM Motocross World Championship, the event in France saw Max Anstie secure third overall in MX1 class, with MX2 rider Thomas Kjer-Olsen finishing as a runner-up in the 250cc class.
Battling through muddy conditions, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Max Anstie delivered strong moto performances in each of the three motos contested in France. Kicking off the day with fourth in the opening MX1 moto, the Brit improved to third in moto two. Claiming third overall in the elite MX1 category, Anstie went on to wrap up the day with a solid runner-up result in the combined MX1/MX2 Superfinal.
“We had a solid day of racing here in France,” Anstie said after completing his pre-season preparation. “It was also good training in muddy conditions for the coming MXGP season. I had three strong motos and I’m happy with my performance overall.
“In the opening moto I had a bad start, but battled my way up to fourth place at the chequered flag. Then in moto two my start was not good either. I did my best again and battled my way to third.
“The combined MX1 and MX2 Supefinal was possibly my best moto for the day. I got the holeshot and had a great battle with the final winner Herlings to end up second. It’s been a good day and I’m looking forward to the start of the world championship in Argentina.”
Racing in front of his home fans, Gautier Paulin suffered from a few small mistakes that prevented the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing rider from showing his full potential. Going 7-8 in the two MX1 motos, the FC 450 mounted rider ended the day with a seventh-place result in the Superfinal.
“Track conditions were tricky today and this helped get some good training on the bike,” said Paulin. “So far I am really satisfied with the performance of my FC 450 machine. We’ve worked a lot during the off-season with the team and now we have a bike that I’m really enjoying racing a lot.
“In the first moto I got a good start but two small crashes during the race forced me to settle for seventh place. There were not many passing points on the track and that made things harder.
“In moto two I had some wheel spin out of the gate so could not get a good start. So eighth was the best I could do. In the Superfinal I finally got a good start but a few mistakes here and there got me finish seventh again.
“Overall, I’m confident with the bike. I just need to work harder on avoiding mistakes so that I can have a good start to the 2018 MXGP series.”
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Thomas Kjer-Olsen rounded out his pre-season racing activities with a strong runner-up result in the MX2 class in France. Fourth in the opening moto, the young Dane went on to claim a solid second in the 250cc class’ second race. Battling through a bad start, Thomas wrapped up the day with eighth in the Superfinal.
“It was a good last test today and I’m happy with second overall,” said Kjer-Olsen. “Conditions were tricky today so it was crucial to avoid mistakes. In the opening moto I didn’t manage to get the desired feeling in the mud. My start was good but then I had two small crashes that didn’t let me battle for the top three.
“I had a much better start in moto two and managed to secure second. With the team we made some suspension adjustments during the break and that worked to our favour. In the Superfinal my start was not great so I did my best and ended up eighth. We’ve worked really hard during the off-season and now I feel 100 per cent ready for the start of the world championship in two weeks time in Argentina.”
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing team riders will now head to Argentina for the start of the 2018 FIM Motocross World Championship on March 3/4.
Results – Lacapelle Marival International MX 2018
MX2 – Overall
1. Hunter Lawrence (Honda) 47pts; 2. Thomas Kjer-Olsen (Husqvarna) 40pts; 3. Jed Beaton (Kawasaki) 40pts… 10. Tom Vialle (Husqvarna) 21pts… 12. Mikkel Haarup (Husqvarna) 15pts
MX2 – Race 1
1. Pauls Jonass (KTM) 13 laps, 25:04:423; 2. Hunter Lawrence (Honda) 25:17:365; 3. Jed Beaton (Kawasaki) 25:32:921; 4. Thomas Kjer-Olsen (Husqvarna) 25:37:085… 7. Tom Vialle (Husqvarna) 25:54:885… 14. Mikkel Haarup (Husqvarna) 26:16:508… 23. Adrien Malaval (Husqvarna) 12 laps, 26:39:296
MX2 – Race 2
1. Hunter Lawrence (Honda) 13 laps, 25:08:941; 2. Thomas Kjer-Olsen (Husqvarna) 25:17:701; 3. Jed Beaton (Kawasaki) 25:42:272… 13. Mikkel Haarup (Husqvarna) 26:20:480; 14. Tom Vialle (Husqvarna) 12 laps, 25:26:236… 17. Adrien Malaval (Husqvarna) 26:07:054
MX1 – Overall
1. Jeffrey Herlings (KTM 50pts; 2. Clement Desalle (Kawasaki) 42pts; 3. Max Anstie (Husqvarna) 38pts… 5. Harri Kullas (Husqvarna) 30pts… 7. Gautier Paulin (Husqvarna) 27pts… 11. Ander Valentin (Husqvarna) 21pts
MX1 – Race 1
1. Jeffrey Herlings (KTM) 13 laps, 24:41:635; 2. Shaun Simpson (Yamaha) 24:53:605; 3. Clement Desalle (Kawasaki) 24:54:622; 4. Max Anstie (Husqvarna) 24:59:059… 7. Gautier Paulin (Husqvarna) 25:24:399… 9. Harri Kullas (Husqvarna) 25:46:688; 10. Ander Valentin (Husqvarna) 26:09:564… 15. Kevin Fors (Husqvarna) 26:33:703
MX1 – Race 2
1. Jeffrey Herlings (KTM) 13 laps, 24:48:399; 2. Clement Desalle (Kawasaki) 25:07:175; 3. Max Anstie (Husqvarna) 25:19:915; 4. Harri Kullas (Husqvarna) 25:27:103… 8. Gautier Paulin (Husqvarna) 25:34:867… 11. Ander Valentin (Husqvarna) 26:19:999
1. Jeffrey Herlings (KTM) 13 laps, 24:45:148; 2. Max Anstie (Husqvarna) 24:50:841; 3. Clement Desalle (Kawasaki) 25:13:272… 7. Gautier Paulin (Husqvarna) 25:33:598; 8. Thomas Kjer-Olsen (Husqvarna) 25:43:618… 11. Ander Valentin (Husqvarna) 26:24:207… 17. Tom Vialle (Husqvarna) 12 laps, 24:52:926