From the burning open arena of the Lausitzring to the cauldron of hills of Loket, the contrast between the German and Czech rounds of the FIM Motocross World Championship in the space of a week could not have been starker. It was Monster Energy Yamaha’s Christophe Charlier who took on the fast and slippery curves with zest and captured second position overall in the MX2 class for another sweaty Grand Prix.
22,000 fans filled the steep inclines around Loket for this fourteenth fixture of seventeen as the clock rapidly ticks down on the 2013 series. While Germany presented a new and expansive prospect for the GP stars the staple forty year old venue for the Czech GP was its usual tight, closed and limited challenge. A fresh start-straight, first corner and timing section provided a ’13 makeover but Loket was still about the starts and producing error-free performances for any hopes of a podium.
Charlier posted a scorecard of 4-2 in the MX2 motos for his third gong of the season and closed the gap to third place in the championship standings to just 31 points with still 150 left on the table in the remaining visits to Belgium, UK and Holland. The stylish Corsican even played a little hardball with rival Jose Butron in the first race that left the Spaniard licking some wounds.
“Butron came very close to me in the first moto so I went for a close move back and this is part of racing,” Charlier said. “To finish fourth in that race meant some good points for the championship. I will push a lot in the next GPs and I want a top three finish for this series.”
Elsewhere CLS Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit’s Alex Lupino was screaming to the heavens after a second moto crash meant his good work from the first race – a striding second position – dumped any chance of an overall trophy and Yamaha’s Dean Ferris also hit the deck in an unhappy first view of Loket.
The ‘man-down’ scenario in Germany with Gautier Paulin meant the Frenchman was out of commission for the Czech meeting but the MX1 Kawasaki ace is optimistic of a return in two weeks when the series cranks into life once more. Sixth overall in the blue ribbon class was CLS ace Tommy Searle. The Brit tangled with Shaun Simpson and chewed the Scot’s leg in his rear wheel at the beginning of the first moto. The hold-up necessitated a fight back to eighth spot. #100 then tried to split the Belgian dominance of the Grand Prix later in the afternoon only to be zapped to fourth place on the last lap by Kevin Strijbos.
Five Grands Prix in seven weeks brings a hectic phase of the schedule to a close. A brief chill-out break will front the trip to Belgium on August 18 where Bastogne will again be the site of further MXGP battles.