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Paulin takes Valkenswaard MXGP win

French Husky ace Gautier Paulin rode to a surprise win in the Dutch GP at Valkenswaard in a day when many of the top riders had trouble in at least one moto. It was hist first GP win since Valkenswaard in 2015 and Husky’s first win of the season. It was the first time Husqvarna had ever won a GP overall at Valkenswaard since racing started there in 1974.

In the opener, Paulin took the holeshot and was never seriously challenged as he romped to the moto win. He was chased over the line by Yamaha’s Jeremy Van Horebeek who fended off a challenge from Jeffrey Herlings who had pushed through from eighth place.

Second time out, Tony Cairoli took the holeshot and was never headed, as Paulin moved into second place and managed to hold off a charge from Herlings.

Paulin said: “It’s really good. I had to work hard for it as I didn’t have the best start in moto two. I had to push at the right moment when everyone was really tired. It feels great – I love it.

“I pushed hard in first moto. In the second moto I pushed at the right moment and all the fans were cheering for Jeffrey behind me but that gave me energy too. It was really emotional for me, especially when I saw my wife crying on the podium.”

Herlings had the crowd on their feet in both races as he mixed it with the top men for the first time this year. It was his first MXGP podium but, of course, the first time he had lost a moto or overall since starting racing GPs at the Dutch circuit in 2010.

Herlings said: “It’s been a long time. I’m on the best bike and twice I came from outside the top ten to finish on the podium. My starts weren’t good. I feel I’ve got the speed back where I need to be. When I get the starts dialled, I’ll be solid.”

Third place went to Belgian Van Horebeek who got close to Paulin in the opener but struggled more in race two and even slipped off. He took fourth place in the moto to take the final podium place.

He said: “I have been sick since the GP in Mexico with a stomach infection and I lost 4kg. In the second moto after 10 minutes I had cramps and didn’t feel too good. The win was possible if I’d been 100% healthy.”

The two men challenging for the title both had difficult days. Championship leader Tim Gajser was pushing for a top five finish in the first moto until he crashed. He got back on and took sixth place in a race that saw his HRC team-mate Evgeny Bonryshev fourth and Suzuki’s Armenas Jasikonis fifth. In race two Gasjer took fourth and almost re-passed Herlings. The Slovenian ended up fifth overall as his title rival Cairoli went one place better.

The most disappointed rider was Cairoli who had a bad start then fell in the opener. The KTM man, who dominated the qualifying race, pulled through the pack until his goggles got smashed and his eyes were filled with sand. He was in pain and came home ninth. Second time out he took the holeshot and won easily.

He now trails Gajser by 14 points in the series. Paulin’s win moved him to third in the standings from Van Horebeek.

It wasn’t a great day for sand specialist Shaun Simpson who had poor starts and finished 14th overall. The only other Brit in the race, Yamaha’s Ryan Houghton, didn’t get into the points.

MXGP – Grand Prix Race 1

1 1 21 Paulin, Gautier FRA HUS 35:24.915
2 2 89 Van Horebeek, Jeremy BEL YAM 35:25.865
3 3 84 Herlings, Jeffrey NED KTM 35:29.739
4 4 777 Bobryshev, Evgeny RUS HON 35:30.549
5 5 27 Jasikonis, Arminas LTU SUZ 35:30.878
6 6 243 Gajser, Tim SLO HON 35:44.363
7 7 25 Desalle, Clement BEL KAW 35:52.133
8 8 259 Coldenhoff, Glenn NED KTM 35:53.882
9 9 222 Cairoli, Antonio ITA KTM 36:02.367
10 10 12 Nagl, Maximilian GER HUS 36:03.340
11 11 461 Febvre, Romain FRA YAM 36:04.026
12 12 24 Simpson, Shaun GBR YAM 36:27.453
13 13 7 Leok, Tanel EST HUS 36:37.584
14 14 4 Tonus, Arnaud SUI YAM 36:41.099
15 15 201 Martens, Yentel BEL HUS 36:52.125
16 16 212 Dewulf, Jeffrey BEL KTM 36:54.884
17 17 151 Kullas, Harri EST HUS 36:56.046
18 18 37 Krestinov, Gert EST HON 36:56.832
19 19 92 Guillod, Valentin SUI HON 37:02.832
20 20 999 Goncalves, Rui POR HUS 37:05.902
21 21 77 Lupino, Alessandro ITA HON 37:07.621
22 22 664 Bengtsson, Filip SWE KTM 37:11.059
23 23 141 Desprey, Maxime FRA KAW 37:11.783
24 24 71 Graulus, Damon BEL HON 37:12.175
25 25 9 de Dycker, Ken BEL SUZ 35:25.153
26 26 685 Lenoir, Steven FRA KAW 35:46.382
27 27 93 Bengtsson, Jonathan SWE KTM 35:50.030
28 28 62 Gercar, Klemen SLO HUS 36:20.178
29 29 494 Van der Mierden, Sven NED HUS 36:28.204
30 30 119 Houghton, Ryan GBR YAM 36:39.713
31 31 73 Irt, Peter SLO YAM 36:40.428
32 32 47 Boulard, Bryan BEL YAM 36:51.659
33 33 920 Valentin, Ander ESP HON 36:49.375
34 34 22 Strijbos, Kevin BEL SUZ 19:57.847
35 35 17 Butron, Jose ESP KTM

MXGP – Race 2 – Classification

1 222 Cairoli, Antonio ITA FMI KTM 35:26.367
2 21 Paulin, Gautier FRA MCM Husqvarna 35:28.625
3 84 Herlings, Jeffrey NED KNMV KTM 35:28.984
4 243 Gajser, Tim SLO AMZS Honda 35:34.597
5 89 Van Horebeek, Jeremy BEL FMB Yamaha 35:38.973
6 461 Febvre, Romain FRA FFM Yamaha 35:41.324
7 27 Jasikonis, Arminas LTU LMSF Suzuki 35:45.247
8 777 Bobryshev, Evgeny RUS MFR Honda 35:54.487
9 4 Tonus, Arnaud SUI FMS Yamaha 36:00.262
10 259 Coldenhoff, Glenn NED KNMV KTM 36:00.503
11 12 Nagl, Maximilian GER DMSB Husqvarna 36:08.967
12 7 Leok, Tanel EST EMF Husqvarna 36:11.560
13 24 Simpson, Shaun GBR ACU Yamaha 36:14.230
14 25 Desalle, Clement BEL FMB Kawasaki 36:42.909
15 664 Bengtsson, Filip SWE SVEMO KTM 36:51.912
16 92 Guillod, Valentin SUI FMS Honda 36:52.280
17 151 Kullas, Harri EST EMF Husqvarna 36:54.333
18 685 Lenoir, Steven FRA FFM Kawasaki 36:58.148
19 212 Dewulf, Jeffrey BEL FMB KTM 35:30.909
20 999 Goncalves, Rui POR FMP Husqvarna 35:36.253
21 37 Krestinov, Gert EST EMF Honda 35:40.459
22 93 Bengtsson, Jonathan SWE SVEMO KTM 35:44.175
23 141 Desprey, Maxime FRA FFM Kawasaki 35:52.068
24 494 Van der Mierden, Sven NED KNMV Husqvarna 36:18.369
25 119 Houghton, Ryan GBR ACU Yamaha 36:37.950
26 73 Irt, Peter SLO AMZS Yamaha 36:38.231
27 62 Gercar, Klemen SLO AMZS Husqvarna 36:39.065
28 47 Boulard, Bryan BEL FFM Yamaha 35:32.876
29 71 Graulus, Damon BEL FMB Honda 27:29.813
30 17 Butron, Jose ESP RFME KTM 23:52.222
31 920 Valentin, Ander ESP RFME Honda 25:03.516
32 201 Martens, Yentel BEL MUL Husqvarna 16:21.800
33 9 de Dycker, Ken BEL FMB Suzuki 11:50.583
34 77 Lupino, Alessandro ITA FMI Honda 2:53.388

MXGP – Overall Classification

1 21 Paulin, Gautier FRA MCM HUS 25 22 47
2 84 Herlings, Jeffrey NED KNMV KTM 20 20 40
3 89 Van Horebeek, Jeremy BEL FMB YAM 22 16 38
4 222 Cairoli, Antonio ITA FMI KTM 12 25 37
5 243 Gajser, Tim SLO AMZS HON 15 18 33
6 777 Bobryshev, Evgeny RUS MFR HON 18 13 31
7 27 Jasikonis, Arminas LTU LMSF SUZ 16 14 30
8 461 Febvre, Romain FRA FFM YAM 10 15 25
9 259 Coldenhoff, Glenn NED KNMV KTM 13 11 24
10 12 Nagl, Maximilian GER DMSB HUS 11 10 21
11 25 Desalle, Clement BEL FMB KAW 14 7 21
12 4 Tonus, Arnaud SUI FMS YAM 7 12 19
13 7 Leok, Tanel EST EMF HUS 8 9 17
14 24 Simpson, Shaun GBR ACU YAM 9 8 17
15 151 Kullas, Harri EST EMF HUS 4 4 8
16 212 Dewulf, Jeffrey BEL FMB KTM 5 2 7
17 664 Bengtsson, Filip SWE SVEMO KTM 0 6 6
18 201 Martens, Yentel BEL MUL HUS 6 0 6
19 92 Guillod, Valentin SUI FMS HON 0 5 5
20 685 Lenoir, Steven FRA FFM KAW 0 3 3
21 999 Goncalves, Rui POR FMP HUS 2 1 3
22 37 Krestinov, Gert EST EMF HON 3 0 3
23 77 Lupino, Alessandro ITA FMI HON 1 0 1
24 93 Bengtsson, Jonathan SWE SVEMO KTM 0 0 0
25 141 Desprey, Maxime FRA FFM KAW 0 0 0
26 494 Van der Mierden, Sven NED KNMV HUS 0 0 0
27 119 Houghton, Ryan GBR ACU YAM 0 0 0
28 73 Irt, Peter SLO AMZS YAM 0 0 0
29 62 Gercar, Klemen SLO AMZS HUS 0 0 0
30 47 Boulard, Bryan BEL FFM YAM 0 0 0
31 71 Graulus, Damon BEL FMB HON 0 0 0
32 17 Butron, Jose ESP RFME KTM 0 0 0
33 920 Valentin, Ander ESP RFME HON 0 0 0
34 9 de Dycker, Ken BEL FMB SUZ 0 0 0
35 22 Strijbos, Kevin BEL FMB SUZ 0 0 0

MXGP – Championship Classification

1 243 Gajser, Tim SLO HON 234
2 222 Cairoli, A. ITA KTM 220
3 21 Paulin, G. FRA HUS 192
4 89 Van Horebeek, J. BEL YAM 182
5 777 Bobryshev, E. RUS HON 176
6 25 Desalle, C. BEL KAW 172
7 461 Febvre, Romain FRA YAM 131
8 84 Herlings, J. NED KTM 124
9 4 Tonus, Arnaud SUI YAM 120
10 12 Nagl, M. GER HUS 116
11 24 Simpson, Shaun GBR YAM 105
12 259 Coldenhoff, G. NED KTM 101
13 22 Strijbos, K. BEL SUZ 90
14 27 Jasikonis, A. LTU SUZ 86
15 99 Anstie, Max GBR HUS 69
16 7 Leok, Tanel EST HUS 54
17 17 Butron, Jose ESP KTM 49
18 999 Goncalves, Rui POR HUS 45
19 911 Tixier, Jordi FRA KAW 36
20 92 Guillod, V. SUI HON 31

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