Honda World Motocross team’s Evgeny Bobryshev battled through the pain barrier to take fifth overall today in Sevlievo, Bulgaria for round two of the FIM World MX1 Championship.
While still carrying the painful thumb injury sustained in Valkenswaard, The Netherlands just under two weeks’ ago, Bobryshev got a good jump off the gate in race one but didn’t fair too well around the first turn. The Russian-ace got to work by passing his teammate Rui Gonçalves and dueled with Ken de Dycker, who did eventually get the better of him in the opening few laps. By the closing stages of the moto the Honda duo were locked together with Bobryshev fighting through the pain in his hand to edge just in front of his teammate Gonçalves, who was battling arm-pump, to finish in eighth position.
In contrast to yesterday’s rain, the track was dry, dusty and rutty by the second moto today in warm temperatures. Bobryshev and Gonçalves got good starts into sixth and eighth positions aboard their factory CRF 450R machines by the end of lap one. Bobryshev continued to battle through the pain, which was increased over the braking bumps, hard landings and downhill sections of the track, with his teammate close behind finding a good rhythm around the Bulgarian track.
While riding consistently to hold his position, Bobryshev did begin to tire close to the end of the race when he came under attack from Sebastien Pourcel and Xavier Boog. However, the Honda pilot found some strength and energy in the last few laps to hold off his rivals to finish in fifth place and take a well earned fifth place overall. Gonçalves was forced to retire on lap 14 of the 35-minute plus two-lap moto with a technical problem, which is still being investigated.
The overall race winner was Gautier Paulin with Christophe Pourcel second and Antonio Cairolo in third position.
Evgeny Bobryshev #777: 5th Overall
“In the first race I had a lot of pain and felt a bit tired by the end, as I was trying so hard and I was so stiff on the bike with not being able to hold on easily. A couple of guys passed me and I ended up eighth. In the second race I was feeling okay; I got a decent gate and into a good rhythm. I was just trying to pick good lines and make no mistakes. Again I had a lot of pain in the areas where there’s a lot of impact, like in the first race, which made me tired. (Sebastien) Pourcel and (Xavier) Boog came close to me, making the last few laps quite nervous, because they were catching me, so I pushed a little bit and found some energy to take fifth, which was important for the points. Thanks again to the team and we’ll keep working hard.”
Rui Gonçalves #999: 15th Overall
“In the first race I got out of the gate well, but just wheelied a little and had to shut off, so I ended up mid-pack. In the first few laps I felt okay, but I got arm pump very quickly until the last lap, so I just couldn’t hold on or push like I wanted to. I was hoping to turn things around in the second moto. I got a better start and then in the first corner a rider came against me and pushed me wide. I was hanging in there and it was better than the first race, but then I had some problems with the bike, which felt like it was losing power. I tried to carry on, but eventually it stopped and I had to retire. I am disappointed, as the races haven’t given us the results I was aiming for, but hopefully we can go to Fermo and put it right.”
Lorenzo Resta: Honda World Motocross Team Manager
“In some ways it was a good day because Bobby did a good job, as he was pushing so hard for the results, especially in the second moto. Fifth place was certainly a lot more than we were expecting at the beginning of the race. With Rui, he had some problems with arm-pump in the first race, and he retired from the second moto, which was a shame, as he was close to Bobby for a while. We are still investigating the problem. Our goal today was damage limitation with Bobby and I think we definitely did that, so we hope to iron out the problems and go to Fermo with our heads held high.”
(Image credit Sarah Gutierrez)