Pocock on the edge of History - European Championship
News Monday 03rd September 2012
Lierop twisted, shifted and churned into a relentless series of bumps and holes. There was little respite for riders or machinery across the terrain that formed one of the hardest and most physical races of the year.
On Saturday evening, with the low sunshine causing a few sighting problems, Pocock was able to hunt down main title rival Stefan Olsen and confidently stride ahead to win the first moto. Sunday morning saw ‘119’ controlling proceedings immediately from the front and turn the sixth round of seven into a formality.
Arnaud Tonus was happy with a consistent outing to fifth overall. The Swiss was held up when Glen Coldenhoff crashed in front of him in the opening moments of the first moto but completed two steady and relatively error-free performances to collect sixth and fifth positions. Zach Osborne was ninth. His runs to seventh and eighth representing some of his more positive results on the sand and his confidence at attacking the Lierop bumps was evident with third position in the qualification heat on Saturday and also in the warm-up session this morning.
There is precious downtime for the Monster Energy Yamaha team this month with Faenza next week and then trips to Germany and Belgium (the latter for the Motocross of Nations where Osborne and Tonus will represent Puerto Rico and Switzerland) also occurring in September.
“Sand is not really my strong point and I haven’t done too much riding in it this year so I was a bit nervous coming here. As soon as I saw I could set a speed to win after the qualification race then it started coming back to together and I found the rhythm I needed quickly. I was behind Olsen in the first race and knew I could be faster. When I got into the lead I never looked back. It was nice to win. I’m so looking forward to next week now. My plan was to try and wrap up the title here at Lierop but one bad race in England meant we’ll be aiming to do the job in Italy.”
“It was pretty positive today; consistent and the speed was good. I think I need to get more time on the sand to get my laptimes better. My rhythm was great at the end and not so much at the beginning. I know where I need to work and sixth and fifth is not too bad on the sand for me. I was a bit unlucky in the first race when Coldenhoff crashed in front of me because I was third at the time but ended up stuck behind him. I had to push really hard in the beginning to come back through and felt a bit tired. All OK though and I’m pretty happy.”
“The whole weekend was quite good for me and definitely the best I have had in Holland or the sand. Yesterday I had good speed and was third in the qualification race and third in the warm-up. It is hard because I haven’t really had the fitness to push for 35 minutes and 2 laps on hard pack nevermind in the sand. I think my fitness continues to build and while eighth and seventh doesn’t sound like much I cannot be disappointed about it. I’m gonna take what I can from it and head into the Nations with good confidence.”
Steve Dixon, Team Manager:
“It was a great GP and a good one for our riders. Fantastic for Mel and being just eight points away from an important title is great. He showed after the jitters of the British Grand Prix that he can get back to double wins and he also showed a commanding speed on the sand. We’re really pleased and looking forward to Faenza. Arnaud and Zach put in some solid rides and had some good battles; Faenza will be a good track for them both and we’ll hope for a chance at the podium.”