Steve Ramon was continually among the fastest guys on his works Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1 RM-Z450 during today’s practice and qualification at Uddevalla for the Grand Prix of Sweden and the eighth round of 15 in the FIM Motocross World Championship.
The Belgian placed fifth in Free Practice, third in Pre-Qualification and then started badly but was able to circulate with good speed to rise to sixth in the Qualification Heat. The Uddevalla track was slippery under the fine coating of top-soil and rough on some jump approaches which forced a hefty degree of caution. Even though the day started cloudy and rainy, the poor conditions brightened up considerably later in the afternoon. Ramon switched to a hard-pack rear Pirelli model but otherwise was able to focus on his aim of being in a position to take a fifth consecutive podium at the venue.
Clement Desalle battled through the day despite a weakened right shoulder and a badly cut forefinger on his clutch hand. Tenderly completing the practice sessions Desalle then crashed on the first corner of the Heat race. The Belgian fought back to within reach of the top ten but jarred his left shoulder and then saw out the race, crossing the line in 19th.
“My speed was good all day and I felt great on the bike. I had a difficult start in the moto because Frossard came out of the gate and right into my line so we both lost a few metres. The first turns were very crowded and I had to watch out that I didn’t crash because a lot of guys were changing lines. I was able to get a good rhythm after that and I pushed a little bit to have a good position for tomorrow. If I want to go for the win or that podium then my start has to be right up there. So I will be focussing.”
“I don’t feel good and I tried to do my best now but it is really difficult. I touched the rear wheel of Boissiere on the first corner and had another crash. I was coming back through when I hit a bump in a strange way and jarred my other shoulder. We will see for tomorrow. I will do the best I can.”
MX1 Qualification Heat: 1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 25:20.865; 2. Maximilian Nagl (GER, KTM), +0:05.358; 3. Ken de Dycker (BEL, Honda), +0:18.541; 4. Steven Frossard (FRA, Yamaha), +0:21.261; 5. David Philippaerts (ITA, Yamaha), +0:22.657; 6. Steve Ramon (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), +0:24.278; 7. Tanel Leok (EST, TM), +0:26.969; 8. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:27.305; 9. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:35.683; 10. Shaun Simpson (GBR, Honda), +0:40.432. 19. Clement Desalle (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), +1:19.832.