Honda World Motocross racer Evgeny Bobryshev can take positives away from this weekend’s Grand Prix in Kegums, Latvia with a consistent performance to eighth place in the opening race, and a good run in the second moto, despite being forced to retire, for round 11 of the MX1 World Championship.
After a tough weekend in Sweden, where Bobryshev tweaked the healing fracture in his right leg, the Russian racer came to this event, at which many of his Russian fans were present, with the goal of making a step forward in finding his confidence. With a good start in race one, Bobryshev rode his own race without incident aboard his Dunlop-shod factory CRF450R, and had a good battle with Tommy Searle in the closing stages to finish in eighth position.
In the second moto Bobryshev again had a good start with a big push on the first lap and was riding fluidly in eighth place, with his eyes firmly set on the pack ahead of him. Unfortunately mid-moto a stone went through the Honda racer’s radiator, as he was catching Kevin Strijbos, and he was forced to retire. Although disappointed, the consistent riding is a big improvement considering the lack of riding time Bobryshev has had in the last few months.
Teammate Nagl had a day to forget. Despite having a poor gate jump in the first moto, the German racer did manage to latch onto the back of his teammate in the opening few laps. Nagl was faster than Bobryshev, and was looking to make a clean pass, but in the meantime lost his rhythm and slipped back to ninth place.
In the second moto Nagl gated into the top ten, but midway through the race he was suffering with exhaustion and stomach pains, which saw him only manage to hang on until the end of the race in 14th position for ninth overall.
The Honda World Motocross team now heads to the final of three back-to-back races in Finland next weekened.
Max Nagl #12: 9th overall
“It’s been a bad weekend for me. In the first heat I had a poor gate jump, but I managed to come out okay in the first corner with a nice turn on the inside. I was behind Bobby, and maybe in the beginning I was a bit faster, but I was a little too careful in trying to pass him, as it’s difficult to make it stick without touching or block passing. I didn’t want to hit him or to crash, as that would have been really bad for the team, so I stayed behind and I really lost my rhythm. I was riding badly, which meant I got really, really tired. I didn’t recover physically for the second heat, and although the gate jump was better, I got pushed really far out in the first turn. I was right at the back, but the riding was good and I passed a lot of guys. Halfway through the moto I hit a wall; I was completely empty, and I just had to survive the race, but I was so finished that I was even passed on the last lap. I almost threw up in my helmet because I was feeling so sick. I don’t think it’s the food, but it started on Friday evening when I had some stomach pain. I take a lot of supplements, so maybe we need to reduce that a bit, but I’m just really disappointed about today.”
Evgeny Bobryshev #777: 17th overall
“I had a good start in the first race; I was nearly second into the first turn, but someone pushed (Gautier) Paulin and I ended up quite wide. I lost a few places, but I was riding my own race and concentrating on being as consistent as possible. I know my confidence is not at a high level, although I was battling with (Tommy) Searle. I passed him in the last few laps, but I made a mistake and he passed me back. I couldn’t come back quick enough to get by him again, so in the end I finished eighth, although it was a good race with no issues. I was feeling good for the second race; physically I felt okay, which was good considering the lack of training in the week that I’ve had. There was a big smash off the start and everyone was pushing each other, and I was also there in the middle of the pack. I wasn’t in the top ten, but I came back to eighth and was catching (Kevin) Strijbos. I had a little rest after pushing in the beginning and I was making my plan to pass him, but then I had a stone in the radiator, which was a big shame. I have to be happy, as I now have it in my head that I know the confidence isn’t there with the lack of training, so I need the performances to build on. Today has shown more of that, and I want to say thanks to the team for all of their hard work.”
Paolo Martin: Honda World Motocross Team Owner
“For sure we don’t have much luck. It was a terrible weekend for us compared with last week, where we had a lot of positivity and came away thinking a podium would be possible here in Latvia, but the riders didn’t find things so easy this weekend. Max rode well yesterday, but today he wasn’t feeling so good, and unfortunately the results suffered. It’s a more positive performance for Bobby, as he found some consistency and the foot was much better. We had a problem with a stone in the radiator in the second moto, so we don’t have the luck we need, but the riding was a lot better from him. For next week we continue our work, and we will try to find where we can improve, but we need to go there refreshed and hope that the luck is on our side.”