It was another epic night of racing with a vociferous and boisterous crowd on hand to witness a spectacular show of aggressive racing that resulted in Trey Canard and Justin Barcia clashing for the win.
Early in the night Canard won his heat race comfortably again but Wil Hahn stole the show after coming from fifth to snag second on the last corner over Greg Aranda.
In Heat 2 Barcia nipped ahead of Gautier Paulin out of turn one and gradually pulled away. Paulin was doing his best to stay with Barcia until a mistake meant he had to focus on keeping ahead of Andrew Short for second. Jordi Tixier threw away fourth place after a crash and had to go to the LCQ which he duly won.
It was French fever in the Superpole contest after Gautier Paulin edged Justin Barcia for the victory and the 1000 Euro prize. The noise was quite simply deafening and something that every motocross fan should experience at least once. Gautier Paulin will probably never forget it!
The Elimination race wasn’t so kind to Paulin though as Barcia pinned the Frenchman to the wall in the first turn. Paulin started and finished 7th meaning he didn’t even make the second stage.
The final three (changed from two on Friday night) was between Barcia, Canard and a very happy Cedric Soubeyras. Both Barcia and Canard were going at it big time with Canard just holding the advantage. Barcia then over gassed it in the tunnel allowing Canard some vital breathing space to take a superb win.
It was onto the final and this is where things really got heated between the Honda teammates!
Barcia holeshot but Canard was right on his rear until he took the joker lane early. From there Canard tried to claw back the gap and, once Barcia took the joker lane, Canard was back on his back wheel.
Canard had to win the race to stand a realistic chance to beat Barcia to the Bercy title so he was on it once he saw Barcia in his view. Canard completely nailed the whoops down the inside and looked to have the pass but Barcia cut back and effectively T-boned his teammate putting Canard high in the bales.
Canard just about stayed on but the gap was now too big as they entered the final lap to make any revengeful passes.
Barcia took a hard fought win with Canard second but neither rider looked at each other on the podium nor in the pits despite sharing the same section. They both might deny there is tension, but there is tension!
After the race a diplomatic Canard said: “It’s racing, you just have to suck it up. But I will try to come back and win tomorrow night.”
While Barcia admitted: “I had to make a pretty aggressive pass. It’s great racing and I had a good time out there.”
Further back Andrew Short was third with Cooper Webb barely holding off Gautier Paulin for fourth by cutting across him before the final jump. Paulin had to start on the second row and never had a shot at the leaders.
So there you have it, teammate warfare in Bercy and there is still another day’s racing to go!
Words by Jonathan McCready
Image courtesy of Jonathan McCready