Podium for Team GB… France take the Win! Motocross of Nations – Report & Results
Team Great Britain did the huge partisan crowd at Matterley Basin proud as they battled to 3rd place in the
Motocross of Nations, their first podium position since 1997. France went onto to take their 4th Chamberlain Trophy in a row, whilst the Netherlands pipped the Brits into 2nd spot by just a solitary point.
On a damp and tricky circuit Max Anstie fired life into the expectant crowd in race one by muscling his way to the front of the field on his way to a massively impressive race win. Luck wasn’t on the side of Anstie’s 250 team mate Tommy Searle who suffered a blown engine and pulled out when in a good top 15 position. Slovenian Tim Gajser hauled his team HRC Honda into 2nd place pegging back the French Captain Gautier Paulin into third. Other than Anstie the stand out performer of the race was Australian Hunter Lawrence who was the top 250 racer in 4th, with Swiss racer Arnaud Tonus 5th. The event didn’t start well either for the American’s as Cole
Sealey pulled out of the race with what appeared to be a collapsed rear shock and his team mate Zac Osbourne couldn’t make up any ground after a poor start and pretty much stayed where he started in 10th.
The Open class big hitters were the next to partner the 250’s in race two, and it was the Dutch dynamo Jeffrey Herlings who grabbed the win after coming back from a fall to finish ahead of Team France’s Romain Febvre. With Febvre’s team mate Christophe Charlier putting in a good ride for 6th on his 250 it was a good race for the French. Zac Osbourne gave the American’s something to cheer about coming from well done the field to steal 3rd from Italian Alesandro Lupion in the latter stage of the race. Again Hunter Lawrence from Australia put in a great shift but a fall whilst up to third was costly put him down the order in 8th but his fellow Aus Kirk Gibbs kept them in contention with a strong 5th spot. Dean Wilson kept the Union Jacks flying with 7th, whilst Tommy Searle battled through into 15th after a poor start.
It was all in 450 for the 3rd race with everything still to race for, and once again Max Anstie, to the delight of the home crowd pulled into the lead ahead of the ultra fast French Racer Romain Febvre. With Gautier Paulin sitting comfortably in 6th the French knew if they held their positions the win would be theirs. The battle for podium spots was not quite so clear cut though, but the Australians were soon out of the running with Kirk Gibbs an early faller and Dean Ferris buried in mid pack unable to make any inroads on the front runners. In the end it was a straight shoot out between Team GB and the Netherlands for second, and with Anstie taking a fall the race was on as Febvre moved into the lead and the once 13 seconds behind Jeffrey Herlings, could sense another race win was on the cards. Anstie to the delight of the crowd regathered his composure to whip it past Febvre before Herlings did the same. Febvre with a huge gap to the next racer pulled in for a new set of goggles leaving Herlings and Anstie to fight it out for the win. Behind the top three Dean Wilson was gaining places and moved into 8th place while Glenn Coldenhoff of the Netherlands did his job to come home in 10th. With a stack of back markers to contend with, and the crowd urging him on Anstie kept it cool to keep a hard charging Herlings at bay to take an impressive double moto victory and land Team GB on the podium behind winners France and runner’s up the Netherlands.
You can’t take anything away from the French team who only had one result out of the top 10 and to win four times in a row is some record.
It was a tremendous achievement for Great Britain as a whole with a fantastic event, an absolute amazing atmosphere from the fans from all over the world, with a special mention to the British fans who got their much deserved podium position. Huge credit must also go to Steve Dixon for bringing the event to the UK and for providing a fantastic race track even with the elements against him. Well done to Team GB and everyone involved.
Overall Team Result
3rd Great Britain
17th Puerto Rico