Rough with the smooth at Spanish MXGP

02 June 2016

Tommy Searle scored a top-ten moto finish at the Cerro Negro circuit in Talavera de la Reina for the Grand Prix of Spain and the ninth round of eighteen in MXGP. The Spanish hard-pack benefited from a decent level of preparation (ripping the soil for deeper lines, more options and a higher technical demands) and heavy rain showers on Saturday that created a tacky and bumpier terrain.

The tight layout, so narrow in parts, was still tricky for overtaking and placed a lot of emphasis – perhaps more than any other circuit on the schedule – on the necessity of a lively start.

On Saturday Searle was lucky to escape a crash out of the gate that saw Kevin Strijbos hit the ground after an initial tangle. The Brit was almost last going up the first hill after the opening corner and persevered on his KX450F to a satisfactory thirteenth place. On a dry and breezy Sunday Tommy made a better getaway for the first moto and ran in eleventh position for long stages of what was a fairly static race. He overtook Jose Butron for tenth and then survived a late attack from British Championship rival Shaun Simpson to confirm tenth place.

On a course that was becoming increasingly rutty and dusty Searle set out his stall for another top ten result in the second moto but lost control on a step-down and landed on Kevin Strijbos causing both riders to crash and Searle eventually pulling out after a blow to the head. Searle placed 11 points towards his world championship total that now sits at 150 and affords the 26 year old eleventh position in the standings.

Vsevolod Brylyakov was twelfth in the MX2 category with the ‘18’ KX250F. The Russian achieved results of ninth and eighteenth in the two motos. He wheelied slightly out of the gate in the first race and spent the first half of the thirty minute and two distance in a five rider scrap for positions on the fringe of the top ten. He established a rhythm of low 1min 57-56secs laps to pull into a clear ninth by the chequered flag. In the second moto Seva was caught up in a third turn pile-up on the brow of the first hill and struggled the rest of the laps to make headway. Eighteenth was his final ranking.

A drive north and to the hillside of St Jean D’Angely lies ahead with the Grand Prix of France taking place next weekend and the second international fixture in a row for Monster Energy DRT Kawasaki.

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