Excellent work by the track staff after heavy rain on Friday evening presented riders and teams with a demanding but challenging track and the Belgian, who celebrated his 28th birthday on Friday, called on all his experience to build his weekend with great deliberation. Ninth in practice, he raced to a solid sixth in the qualifying race and proved the benefit of recent testing at the starts to get out of the gate third in each of the points-scoring races. On both occasions he ran the same pace as the eventual third-placeman, narrowly losing out on the podium placing each time after one small mistake, but the solid scoring has taken him clear of his immediate rivals in the points standings and he is now a secure fourth and will have his eyes firmly set on third, just fourteen points away in the coming weeks. Teammate Jordi Tixier was also in great form, again riding with his regular finesse as he rebuilds from the break in his schedule during the Spring, as he raced to eighth place in qualification and he quickly settled into a top ten ranking in the opening GP moto before crashing out of ninth place on the eighth of nineteen laps. Feeling pain in the wrist and having taken a bang to the head, he withdrew from racing for the remainder of the weekend and returned to France for a thorough medical examination before his home GP next weekend. “I started my weekend step by step, as the track was really strange on Saturday due to the rain, and I have to say that they did a good job this weekend considering the conditions.” said Desalle I had good starts again this weekend and that’s very positive; in the first moto I was third but got passed by Paulin and Herlings when I made a small mistake. I came back on Paulin and I was feeling faster than him but I couldn’t overtake him, which was frustrating as a top three was possible. In the second moto I was third behind Cairoli and Paulin and had a good rhythm, a good speed and a good feeling but Herlings was really fast and passed me. I came back on Paulin again but I made another small mistake, lost my rhythm and again had to be content with fourth. The level in the MXGP is so close that we work on any small detail to make a difference, and after each race we talk with the staff to find where we can make minor changes to the settings to be back on the podium.”
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