Red Bull KTM factory rider Tony Cairoli returned GP-winning form on Sunday when the MXGP returned to Switzerland for the first time since 2001.
The Italian wrapped up his weekend with a 1-5 moto result for the victory while Tim Gajser and Romain Febvre took the minor podium places.
Tony Cairoli was the fastest qualifier on Saturday and a dominant win in the opening moto on the KTM 450 SX-F, where he charged through the finish line 7.5 seconds ahead of the next rider put him in the box seat for the overall victory in the very technical track.
Cairoli also had a powerful start in the second moto and was in the lead in the early stages, mapping out the same path that had allowed him to win the first. He hit the front just after the first corner and settled into the race looking comfortable. But Gajser, who had finished back in ninth place in the first race, was on a mission to take back points.
While the two front-runners fought hard for the lead in the first half of the race, Cairoli’s teammate Glenn Coldenhoff and Romain Febvre were also major players. Febvre went on to finish second in the race with Coldenhoff behind him in third. Cairoli had a small tip over half way through the last lap after some difficulties with a lapped rider but crossed the line in fifth place to secure the overall win.
Cairoli: “It was a very good weekend and we are back on the 450 this weekend. We’re still testing these past weeks but I immediately felt very good with the bike.
“We won the qualifying and the first moto, and today I was in the lead in the second race. Tim (Gajser) and Romain (Febvre) were pushing very hard and also taking some risks in some places. I tried to stay with Tim but I was a bit tired from the first moto. I’m still adapting to the 450 and changing is not always easy, so I settled into third place. Then the last lap the track was very rough and the ruts were deep and they were not easy to get out of. The lapped rider crossed my line so I made a mistake and I crashed. It took a while before I could start again so Glenn and Bobryshev went past.
“I was disappointed then, because I wasn’t sure it I could still win the GP. It is good to go into the two-week break with a win and I’ll try to regroup for the sand in Assen. My goal is to win the remaining races and to finish as close as possible to the top. So let’s see how we finish the season.”