Benistant claims the title in the EMX250 class at the final round in Lommel!

LOMMEL (Belgium) 20 October 2020 – The European Championship have concluded another race day here in Lommel, Belgium, this time for the round of Limburg.

It was a special day for Hutten Metaal Yamaha Racing’s Thibault Benistant who clinched the EMX250 title in style with a race win in the second heat, and an overall victory. This gave the Frenchman the best opportunity to celebrate his gold plate on the top of the box as he claimed his sixth-round win of the season.

Meanwhile in the EMX125 Presented by FMF Racing category, Andrea Bonacorsi of Fantic Racing edged closer to his maiden EMX title, as a race win helped him maintain a healthy 38-point advantage on David Braceras of RFM GasGas MX Junior Team, who celebrated his first overall podium victory with a 1-2 result, keeping the championship chase alive.

 

This season Thibalut Benistant showed great form, which all began at the Latvian triple-header, where the Frenchman swept the podium at all three rounds after he missed the podium in Valkenswaard by 1 point. His closest rival, and this year’s vice champion, Mattia Guadagnini of Husqvarna Junior Racing Maddii then responded with his own string of race wins and podiums in Mantova, as he won the rounds of Città di Mantova, Europe and then also the round of Spain.

The championship chase came down to the wire here in Lommel, with Benistant having the perfect day during the first round of Flanders, as he secured two strong race wins. Guadagnini was looking to respond and give it his best shot for today’s races though it didn’t work out. Despite winning the opening race, while having a close battle with the series leader, the second race was much different for the Italian, who crashed out of the race and did not score any points.

And while the focus was on who the winner will be this season, the third spot of the championship also opened up, after an unfortunate crash side-lined Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Kay de Wolf, who was absent from the races today. The third-place medal ended up going to Hakon Fredriksen of Yamaha SM Action MC Migliori J1 Racing, who in the second half of the series was showing some strong results, finishing on the podium a total of five times, three of those times consecutively. During today’s races, the Norwegian put in an impressive performance, finishing the races in fourth and then second, which also put him on the second step of the box.

Though with Guadagnini unfortunately not scoring any points in the second race, this left another spot on the podium up for grabs. And it was Jorgen-Matthias Talviku who confirmed his second podium of the season, with a third and a seventh-place finish in the races, to also secure fifth in the championship this year, a brilliant position to build upon as he plans to enter the series once again in 2021.

Thibault Benistant: “Of course it’s amazing to win another European Title, all the season I tried to stay focus because I knew that you cannot win every race so I worked really hard with the team, with Yamaha and with everybody to get the best result every race and finally we did it and I’m really happy about that. Of course, I’m looking forward to next season and now I have some news goals. Going to the MX2 class and I need to be really focused on that.

Haakon Fredriksen: “I started the season only in Latvia because I wasn’t in Valkenswaard; I just worked hard all the season and once I got the possibility I took it. Today I’m happy about my riding, I got the third overall in the championship and I’m really satisfied about that. My favourite moment of the season was the race win in Mantova, I really enjoy that, and I had a special feeling”.

Jorgen-Matthias Talviku: “I’m really happy about today and I really enjoied the track, but today the first race for me has been quite tough so in the second one I pushed really hard to get this result and be on the podium 3rd today. I’m also really happy for the 5th place I get in the championship. For the new season I want to keep in the EMX250 Championship and I’ll work a lot in the wintertime and do everything I need to be ready and focus next year. I want to thank my manager, my team and my trainer, the Estonian federation and my family because it has been a fantastic year for me!”.

EMX250 - Race 1 – Top 10 Classification: 1. Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, Husqvarna), 29:57.541; 2. Thibault Benistant (FRA, Yamaha), +0:09.329; 3. Jorgen-Matthias Talviku (EST, Husqvarna), +0:19.802; 4. Hakon Fredriksen (NOR, Yamaha), +0:20.573; 5. Marcel Conijn (NED, KTM), +0:27.386; 6. Gianluca Facchetti (ITA, Yamaha), +0:29.752; 7. Albin Gerhardsson (SWE, Husqvarna), +0:32.004; 8. Lion Florian (GER, KTM), +0:34.492; 9. Anthony Bourdon (FRA, Husqvarna), +0:50.292; 10. Oriol Oliver (ESP, KTM), +0:52.331.

EMX250 - Race 2 – Top 10 Classification: 1. Thibault Benistant (FRA, Yamaha), 30:34.916; 2. Hakon Fredriksen (NOR, Yamaha), +0:07.820; 3. Tim Edberg (SWE, Yamaha), +0:14.687; 4. Bastian Boegh Damm (DEN, KTM), +0:29.301; 5. Marcel Conijn (NED, KTM), +0:37.160; 6. Albin Gerhardsson (SWE, Husqvarna), +0:44.335; 7. Jorgen-Matthias Talviku (EST, Husqvarna), +0:53.340; 8. Rick Elzinga (NED, KTM), +0:57.739; 9. Maximilian Spies (GER, Husqvarna), +1:07.822; 10. Lorenzo Locurcio (VEN, Kawasaki), +1:09.185

EMX250 - Overall Top 10 Classification: 1. Thibault Benistant (FRA, YAM), 47 points; 2. Hakon Fredriksen (NOR, YAM), 40 p.; 3. Jorgen-Matthias Talviku (EST, HUS), 34 p.; 4. Marcel Conijn (NED, KTM), 32 p.; 5. Albin Gerhardsson (SWE, HUS), 29 p.; 6. Bastian Boegh Damm (DEN, KTM), 27 p.; 7. Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, HUS), 25 p.; 8. Lion Florian (GER, KTM), 23 p.; 9. Gianluca Facchetti (ITA, YAM), 23 p.; 10. Tim Edberg (SWE, YAM), 20 p.

EMX250 - Championship Top 10 Classification: 1. Thibault Benistant (FRA, YAM), 423 points; 2. Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, HUS), 377 p.; 3. Hakon Fredriksen (NOR, YAM), 293 p.; 4. Kay de Wolf (NED, HUS), 272 p.; 5. Jorgen-Matthias Talviku (EST, HUS), 269 p.; 6. Tim Edberg (SWE, YAM), 232 p.; 7. Lorenzo Locurcio (VEN, KAW), 211 p.; 8. Tom Guyon (FRA, KTM), 178 p.; 9. Bastian Boegh Damm (DEN, KTM), 160 p.; 10. Gianluca Facchetti (ITA, YAM), 157 p.

EMX250 - Manufacturers Classification: 1. Yamaha, 452 points; 2. Husqvarna, 442 p.; 3. KTM, 366 p.; 4. Kawasaki, 222 p.; 5. Honda, 47 p.

     

Main Photo: EMX250 Championship Podium

Fom left to right: Infront Moto Racing CEO David Luongo, Maddii Racing's Team Manager Marco Maddii, Thibault Benistant, Hakon Fredriksen and FIM Europe President Martin De Graaff.

Bottom Photos: 1. EMX250 Start; 2. Thibault Benistant

 

In the EMX125 Presented by FMF Racing category, it was David Braceras of RFME GasGas MX Junior Team, who took the top step of the podium for the very first time this season and he did so with a second and a race win. For Braceras, this was his fifth podium of the year, and his second race victory, which also helped him keep the championship chase alive, as the Spaniard whittled down on the lead of Fantic Racing’s Andrea Bonacorsi who now heads into the final round on Saturday with a 38-point advantage.

In the first race, the Spaniard had to work hard to fend off the championship leader, for quite some time, and would eventually drop a position after eight laps, as Bonacorsi carried out with his charge for the win.

Bonacorsi finished second overall today, after a confident race win in the opening race, which saw him get a good start and work his way around Braceras for the victory. The Italian then struggled in the second heat with the start and finding his flow and would finish down in fifth. Despite that, it was his fifth podium of the year and he now has one hand on the EMX125 Presented by FMF Racing title, as we head into the final round of the championship in four-day time.

Today’s podium saw a new face in the mix, as Haakon Osterhagen of Creymert Racing celebrated his first top three of the season. The Norwegian started well in the opening race, though eventually dropped to eight after a brief moment off track. The KTM rider was able to make up for it in the season heat though, where he really showed his skills in the sand to finish the race in second place.

There’s now just one round remaining, and the door for the championship is still open, as Braceras has a shot of going after the title. Third in the championship is Meico Vettik, who has two podium finishes under his belt. Though he cannot afford to relax as Pietro Razzini is just a further eight points adrift and could get himself a medal this season. He showed his strength today as he challenged for the win in the opening race, which he finished fourth. So in terms of the championship nothing is concrete and the next few races will be interesting.

David Braceras: “I still cannot believe it, I really worked hard with my team and the dream came true. The day started really good, I was fourth in the time practice and in the first race I took the holeshot. I was able to lead almost all the race when five minutes to the end Andrea did catch me and passed me and I finish second. In the second race I started second and I pushed really hard. I’m really happy to take the overall here in Lommel and I’m feeling really good for Saturday, but I don’t think about the Championship right now and I’m only focused on the races, we’ll see what will happen on Saturday”.

Andrea Bonacorsi: “I started quite good, for sure better than last Saturday…in the time Practice I was sixth and in the first race started third and I was riding confident, I was able to pass the two riders in front of me and go for the victory. In the second race I started around tenth place, but I wasn’t riding really good, so I tried to do my best and got the fifth place. I’m quite happy about the result of being second overall and we’ll see what will happen in the last race on Saturday. I’m ready for Saturday, I don’t want think too much about the Championship and I want to be super focused for the race and ride good and get a good result”.

Haakon Osterhagen: “I’m feeling really strong in the sand, I train all the winter for that but unfortunately the season hasn’t been like I was expecting, and I struggled a lot. In the first race I started second and after somebody push me out of the track so I had to push really hard to re-group and get an eight that was the maximum I could do. In the second race I started really good and I took the holeshot and I was leading from some laps as well; after though Braceras passed me and I tried to follow him. I had some issues but luckily, I was able to be 2nd and get the third overall. I’m feeling really good and I’m feeling really strong in the sand. I’m looking forward to the next round”.

EMX125 Presented by FMF Racing - Race 1 – Top 10 Classification: 1. Andrea Bonacorsi (ITA, Fantic), 30:13.254; 2. David Braceras (ESP, GASGAS), +0:06.282; 3. Max Palsson (SWE, KTM), +0:06.532; 4. Pietro Razzini (ITA, Husqvarna), +0:12.286; 5. Andrea Roncoli (ITA, Husqvarna), +0:13.833; 6. Florian Miot (FRA, KTM), +0:16.353; 7. Karlis Alberts Reisulis (LAT, KTM), +0:18.642; 8. Haakon Osterhagen (NOR, KTM), +0:23.314; 9. Saad Soulimani (FRA, KTM), +0:35.363; 10. Martin Venhoda (CZE, KTM), +0:41.924.

EMX125 Presented by FMF Racing - Race 2 – Top 10 Classification: 1. David Braceras (ESP, GASGAS), 31:16.907; 2. Haakon Osterhagen (NOR, KTM), +0:02.521; 3. Scott Smulders (NED, Husqvarna), +0:09.650; 4. Meico Vettik (EST, KTM), +0:14.087; 5. Andrea Bonacorsi (ITA, Fantic), +0:14.655; 6. Florian Miot (FRA, KTM), +0:18.198; 7. Andrea Roncoli (ITA, Husqvarna), +0:25.085; 8. Quentin Marc Prugnieres (FRA, KTM), +0:31.194; 9. Pietro Razzini (ITA, Husqvarna), +0:36.763; 10. Nikita Kucherov (RUS, KTM), +0:42.723.

EMX125 Presented by FMF Racing - Overall Top 10 Classification: 1. David Braceras (ESP, GAS), 47 points; 2. Andrea Bonacorsi (ITA, FAN), 41 p.; 3. Haakon Osterhagen (NOR, KTM), 35 p.; 4. Florian Miot (FRA, KTM), 30 p.; 5. Andrea Roncoli (ITA, HUS), 30 p.; 6. Pietro Razzini (ITA, HUS), 30 p.; 7. Max Palsson (SWE, KTM), 25 p.; 8. Karlis Alberts Reisulis (LAT, KTM), 23 p.; 9. Nikita Kucherov (RUS, KTM), 21 p.; 10. Scott Smulders (NED, HUS), 20 p.

EMX125 Presented by FMF Racing - Championship Top 10 Classification: 1. Andrea Bonacorsi (ITA, FAN), 303 points; 2. David Braceras (ESP, GAS), 265 p.; 3. Meico Vettik (EST, KTM), 224 p.; 4. Pietro Razzini (ITA, HUS), 216 p.; 5. Max Palsson (SWE, KTM), 213 p.; 6. Andrea Roncoli (ITA, HUS), 194 p.; 7. Guillem Farres (ESP, GAS), 176 p.; 8. Quentin Marc Prugnieres (FRA, KTM), 161 p.; 9. Valerio Lata (ITA, KTM), 156 p.; 10. Saad Soulimani (FRA, KTM), 140 p.

EMX125 Presented by FMF Racing - Manufacturers Classification: 1. KTM, 341 points; 2. Fantic, 303 p.; 3. GASGAS, 299 p.; 4. Husqvarna, 273 p.; 5. Yamaha, 167 p.

     

Main Photo: EMX125 Presented by FMF Racing Start

Botto Photos: 1. David Braceras; 2. Haakon Osterhagen

 

TIMETABLE (Local Timing CET/GMT+2)

WEDNESDAY: 09:15 MX2 Free/Time Practice, 10:15 MXGP Free/Time Practice, 12:05 MX2 Race 1, 13:05 MXGP Race 1, 15:00 MX2 Race 2, 16:00 MXGP Race 2.

 

MXGP of Limburg – QUICK FACTS

Circuit length: 1830m

Type of ground: Sand

Temperature: 16°

Weather conditions: cloudy with some showers

 

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FIM Europe

MXGP of Limburg

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