A close second for Boog

May 17, 2010

MX1, Bellpuig, Catalunya, 17 May 2010
MX1 rookie Xavier Boog of the KRT came within a couple of seconds of his first moto win in the top echelon of off-road racing on a sun-baked hillside track at Bellpuig in the Catalan region of Spain.

Teammate Sebastien Pourcel was eliminated for the day after a first race crash left him with double vision, but Nicolas Aubin, racing his second MX1 GP for Kawasaki Bud Racing, took a ninth place in the opening race to herald promise of a great future in the class.

Boog once again showed that he has developed a first class starting technique on his Kawasaki KX450F, but never settled down in the opening race and dropped down to 13th place by the finish after numerous mistakes and a couple of crashes. The determined Frenchman knows no better inspiration than his own pride and self-respect and set about making up for his disappointing first race with a vengeance in race two, forcing his way up the leader board to eventually finish second, less than two seconds behind the winner.

Pourcel had been in inspired form in the opening race and had just passed defending champion Cairoli for sixth place when his front wheel dropped in a hole as he approached a jump and he crashed heavily. Suffering with double vision during the interval between the two races, Sebastien and the team wisely decided not to risk him contesting the second race.

In his second GP since transferring to the MX1 class Aubin gave the first indications that he will soon be a major threat for honors as he battled with the eventual GP winner Leok and multiple past MX1 GP winner De Dycker throughout the opening race on his way to 9th place. A similar finish looked on the cards in race two until he momentarily forgot the tremendous power of his new bike and lost a lot of time in a crash before mounting a charge which almost took him back into the points.

Nicolas was the only member of the Kawasaki Bud Racing Team at the start on Sunday after teammate Gregory Aranda, surely the most unfortunate rider of the 2010 GP season, suffered a double fracture of the lower right leg which will keep him out of racing for at least three months.

The Kawasaki family was delighted to welcome back Jonathan Barragan to the race track for the first time since he suffered a dislocation of the right leg last month; the smiling Spaniard, the MX1 GP winner at Bellpuig last year, said that he was already able to swim and cycle and expects to be given clearance to start riding his Kawasaki KX450F soon before hopefully rejoining the KRT team for the 8th round of the FIM MX1 World Championship at Teutschenthal in Germany on the weekend of June 21/22.

Xavier Boog:  "I got two great starts today, but I didn't make the best of the first one. I started sixth but I just couldn't find a good rhythm and crashed twice. I just kept making mistakes and finished down in 13th place. I was frustrated and angry with myself when I got back to the truck; I was determined to do better in the second race and did just that. I was actually second into the first turn but drifted a little wide and three guys went underneath me but I settled into a good rhythm straight away and felt comfortable racing with the leaders. I found a place where I could make passes and came back to second place, right on the winner, by the end. I have now proved that I am capable of a podium, and that will be my next goal."

Nicolas Aubin:  "I got a great start in the first race and found some good lines to battle with riders like Leok and De Dycker to finish ninth. The track was really well prepared, I had fun on the bike and didn't spend too much energy; that was important as my physical condition is not yet back at his best and the KX450F Kawasaki that Bud has prepared for me is really powerful. The engine is great and I feel more and more comfortable every time I ride the bike. I didn't start so well in the second race but I moved quickly up to 12th before getting stuck behind Coppins. I just couldn't find a way past him and ended up trying too hard and crashing. By the time I got going again I was last, but I didn't want to pull out and in the end I only just missed out on a point by one place and a few seconds."

Sébastien Pourcel:  "I started mid pack in the first race but I immediately settled into a good rhythm and found some good lines to move forward to sixth place. I even passed Cairoli but a few laps later my front wheel dropped in a hole just before a jump and I crashed pretty hard. I fell on my head, took the handlebars in my ribs and was in shock for a while. During the interval I had some troubles with my vision, I couldn't see so well with my right eye and as a team we decided it was better for me not to start the second race. Obviously it is disappointing not to score any points this weekend, but I proved in the practice sessions and during the first race that I'm back to my previous speed."

Jonathan Barragan: "I feel better and better every day, and for a few days now I've been able to go swimming and cycling again; that's my program every morning, then in the afternoon I go working with my physiotherapist. That's the best way to stay in good physical shape before my comeback. This week I will travel to Belgium to see Doctor Claes. He will advise me when I can start riding my Kawasaki again, but I think the goal is going to be in Teutschenthal for the eighth round of the series. Mentally it's not so easy for me not to be racing, especially here in Bellpuig where I won last year. But I am looking forward to working with the team again and getting the good results we expect; before my injury they had found the best settings for my style, I was pleased with the bike and I'm now impatient to start racing again."