Red Bull KTM Factory Racing came away with a podium third for Antonio Cairoli in Round Three of the MXGP World Championship and a podium second for MX2 factory team-mate Pauls Jonass to wrap up the weekend’s MXGP racing in Patagonia, Argentina.
Cairoli, as tenacious as ever picked up a 2-2 result for his podium third, which given that he had a big crash on the final stages of the opening moto was a very strong result. He went down hard on the track just a few corners before the finish but had a big enough gap to hold onto second. Although stunned he managed to scramble back on his KTM 350 SX-F and finish the race.
The Italian rider deployed his well-known fighting spirit in the second heat and managed to keep rival Clement Desalle in check. Desalle was heading for second and a possible overall win, but Cairoli went on the attack, overtook him and effectively changed the order of the final overall podium. GP winner was Max Nagl, with Desalle in second and Cairoli overall third.
Cairoli and Desalle, long time track rivals are on equal points in second place in the championship standings after the third round. They both have 123 while Desalle currently has a 10-point lead and carries the red plate through to the next round.
Team-mate Ken de Dycker finished 12-11 for overall 12th. Tommy Searle, the third member of the factory team is currently out injured.
The KTM factory team’s rookie Pauls Jonass continued to be up with the front of the competition and came away with 2-3 result for overall second in the MX2 GP. But he also regretted being involved in a race incident that saw him touch team-mate Jeffrey Herlings in the heat of the battle in the opening stage of race one.
Herlings crash damaged his handlebars and made it impossible for him to continue but he made a powerful comeback in race two to take a comfortable victory and still wind up overall seventh in the GP.
Pauls Jonass: “I found my rhythm and I am feeling confident on the bike and the track but I was pretty bummed because I touched Jeffrey and then he crashed. It was my fault and I didn’t want to do that.” Jonass added that he didn’t want to take any risks in the second heat and was happy to settle for 2-3 and overall second.
Herlings and the GP winner Dylan Ferrandis leave Argentina both with 125 points, while Jonass is in third place with 112.
The next round is on April 19 when the championship returns to Europe and is hosted by Arco di Trento in Italy, where riders can expect a tight, hard pack track surface in contrast to the sand of Patagonia.
MXGP of Patagonia Argentina at Neuquen – Round 3 MXGP Results