In a season filled with great moments, Team HRC’s Tim Gajser saved his best performance of the year for the second moto in Lommel, coming through from seventh place to power into the lead with five laps remaining and win the MXGP of Lommel with a one-one sweep.
Once again the Honda CRF450RW rider gave himself first gate pick by posting a qualification time over one second quicker than the rest of the field, which he then took full advantage of by reeling off two impressive holeshots. In the first race, this gave him the platform to control the moto, posting fast lap after fast lap as he pulled out a lead of over 20 seconds by the time the chequered flag was waved. It was his 11th race win of the season but he knew he still had a lot of work to do to get to number 12 which would give him the overall and the illusive one-one he has definitely deserved this year.
Like race one, he swept across the holeshot line in first place and was looking good until a mistake midway through lap one dropped him down to seventh position. With the runner-up from race one pulling away at the front, Gajser knew that the only way he’d get the overall was to win race two, but by the time he remounted, he was over 10 seconds behind. As the laps ticked off, the Slovenian worked his way through the field, posting the fastest lap of the moto to try and close in on the leader. With five laps left, he made his move and passed around the outside of one of the deep sandy bowl turns, immediately pulling out a gap that was unassailable for the tiring field. After a season of 12 moto wins, and three overalls, this was the best performance of a rider who is on top of his game and one which gave him perfect one-one moto wins. Importantly in the championship battle, it also extended his lead at the top of the table to 74 points with just three rounds and six motos left to run.
Next up for the reigning champion is the final triple-header of the year in Pietramurata, Italy. The Trentino track is a favourite of Gajser’s and he’ll be hoping to round off the season in perfect style, starting next weekend on Sunday 1st November.
Unfortunately for Jeremy van Horebeek, a fifth place in race two was snatched out of his grasp as he ran out of fuel less than a lap from the end. It was a disappointing end to a hard-fought day on his home track but he was still able to walk away with a 10th overall. New teammate Nathan Watson also impressed in his first MXGP outing with the team by placing 11th in the first moto in the difficult conditions.
In the MX2 class Alvin Ostlund showed his sand skills once more by getting 10th overall after his 12-9 results. The Assomotor rider has continually showed top 10 speed in the six motos we’ve had in Lommel and he’ll be hoping to keep up this good run of form in Trentino next week.