Paulin was one of three Dunlop riders to feature inside the top three during the Lierop races – Honda World Motocross team-mates Evgeny Bobryshev and Rui Goncalves also making appearances at the sharp end.
Having struggled with injuries for much of the year, the deep, churning sand seemed an unlikely place for Bobryshev to claim his biggest points haul of the season.
Yet that’s exactly what the Russian did – seventh after a fall in moto one being followed by fourth in moto two, where Bobryshev ran as high as third and showed plenty of heart by again passing Sean Simpson on the very final lap.
Bobryshev said: “We made some little steps overnight with the suspension that made me feel better and we are definitely going in the right direction overall. I just need a little bit more time training on the sand tracks to get myself in the perfect condition. My aim is just to stay consistent for the last two races and enjoy my riding while continuing to train hard.”
Team-mate Goncalves gated well to hold third early in the opening moto in Benelux, but dropped back to 14th, prompting bike alterations between races. Another excellent start for moto two then counted for nothing when second place Max Nagl fell just in front him, bringing Goncalves down.
Goncalves, who recovered to eighth, said: “I was pretty happy with how I was riding, but frustrated with how the weekend turned out because it could have been a lot easier if things went more smoothly. There’s two grands prix to go, so I’ll keep working hard to try and bring the good results home.”