For Team Bud Racing Kawasaki the season really start this weekend in Italy, as they line up for the first time this season three bikes for Brian Moreau, Mitchell Harrison and Jimmy Clochet in the fourth GP of the season. It was a come back for Brian after his crash in Argentina, a first race in Europe for Mitchell and both had a great Saturday.
Winner one week ago in the opening round of the French MX1 National, Jimmy Clochet was fully ready for the second round of the EMX250, even if he switched bike from one weekend to another. Brian got the ‘green light’ from his doctor just one week ago and just spend a few hours on his bike before traveling to Arco alongside American Mitchell Harrison who arrived in Hossegor last Tuesday to replace Brian Hsu. Mitchell scores a GP podium three years ago in the US when he was 18 years old, but he never visited any European track before this weekend.
Qualified mid pack for the EMX250 Jimmy Clochet got a great start in the first race, but when another rider hit his front wheel in the second turn he crashed and lost his fourth position! He was very lucky as none of the thirty riders coming behind hurt him, but he regained the track in last position and came back twentieth to score one point. The second race was not better for him, as he failed to add some points after several crashes on a rough track.
Using both practice sessions to learn the track and adapt the bike to his style, Mitchell Harrison got a great start in the qualifying race and scored an excellent fifth position even if he just rode the Bud Kawasaki twice before flying to Italy. He didn’t got such good starts on Sunday, but scores some points in the first moto on a track where passing was a real challenge. Tenth of the qualifying race Brian Moreau crashed twice during the first race but also scores his first points of the season; fourth at the start of the second race, he retires early after a crash in a corner.
After this first step, Brian and Mitchell have now five weeks to prepare the next round of the World Championship scheduled in Mantova (again in Italy!); both will have time to train and work with the team as they will join Jimmy Clochet for the next rounds of the French Elite (Romagne this weekend and Bitch in three weeks’ time).
Welcome to our new rider Mitchell Harrison who will do his first MX2 season race this week-end in Italy, together with the come back of his team mate Brian Moreau.
Happy to have you in the team
Only few month after joining team Bud Racing Kawasaki, Jimmy Clochet was involved this weekend in the opening round of the 250 European Championship in Great Britain. This first one was pretty successful for the young Frenchman who scores a top five result.
Single rider under the Bud Racing awning as we’re waiting the comeback of Brian Moreau and the arrival in Europe of Lorenzo Locurcio, Jimmy felt some pressure as any rider who signs his first pro contract and enters such a highly competitive class in a pro team. Racing in the past some rounds of the series as a privateer, Jimmy was strong all weekend long and delivers solid results! Fifth in the timed practice period, he got a good gate pick and took a perfect start in the first race in second position; fourth after the opening lap he never let any opportunities to his rivals to pass him and crossed the finish line in fourth position. On Sunday his second start was not as good and on a rougher track he came back ninth, trying to keep a good rhythm but also taking care to avoid any stupid mistake! Fifth overall he offers some joy to the team and partners, after some disappointing periods with the injuries of both Brian’s. Next weekend the team will be in the Netherlands, welcoming for this round Australian Meghan Rutledge in the opening round of the Women World Championship and expecting to see Lorenzo with his visa in the pocket.
Jimmy Clochet: “I miss the overall podium for five points, but overall I’m pretty happy with this fifth position as I have raced the MX1 class in France so this was my first race of the season with the 250 Kawasaki. I got a good start in second position but everyone is pushing hard during the first laps and two other guys passed me quickly; I kept my rhythm for the rest of the race to finish fourth. On Sunday my start was also good but in the first corner everyone was pushing and I was mid pack after a few corners; it took me several laps to find a good rhythm, as I’m not used to race during two days instead of one. I came back ninth for fifth overall, it was a good way to start the season with such a professional team as Bud Racing, and we’ll continue to work before the next round in Italy.”
En attendant le retour prochain de Brian Moreau qui récupère de sa blessure au poignet, Jimmy Clochet représentait le team Bud Racing Kawasaki lors de l’ouverture du championnat Elite à Castelnau de Lévis. Pour sa seconde sortie en 450 Jimmy se classe sixième de cette épreuve, avant de prendre part ce weekend a l’ouverture du championnat d’Europe 250 en Grande Bretagne.
Quentin Prugnières gagne chez les espoirs !
Avec des averses intermittentes et de fraiches bourrasques de vent, il fallait être très vigilant dimanche pour ne pas faire d’erreurs sur le tracé de Castelnau. Pour sa seconde apparition en course sur la 450 KXF Bud Racing, Jimmy qui a fêté ses 20 ans cet hiver bénéficiait d’une bonne place de la grille mais il n’en aura pas tiré profit au premier départ. Complètement enfermé en queue de peloton il va s’appliquer à remonter méthodiquement, franchissant la ligne d’arrivée à une bonne septième place. Bien mieux parti en seconde manche ou le holeshot lui échappait de peu il fera une solide course exempte d’erreurs pour se classer sixième.
Les jeunes crossmen Français en décousaient eux aussi à Castelnau, et chez les espoirs c’est Quentin Prugnières qui allait faire briller les couleurs Bud Racing en s’imposant. Absent des circuits l’an passé suite à des problèmes de santé, Quentin qui fetera ses 14 and en mai prochain, remporte la première manche, avant de rater son départ dans la seconde ; revenu jusqu’en seconde position, il remporte cette première épreuve et portera donc la plaque rouge de leader dans un mois à Romagne (Bretagne).
Jimmy Clochet : « J’avais un peu de pression avant cette épreuve, mais de la bonne pression et l’envie de bien défendre les couleurs Bud Racing pour cette première épreuve de l’Elite. Le MX Inter de Sommières s’était bien passé la semaine dernière, mais Castelnau de Lévis est une piste particulière en 450 surtout avec la météo de dimanche. J’ai complètement raté mon départ en patinant sur la grille, je remonte de la 29ème à la 7ème place dans une catégorie très relevée avec quelques pilotes de GP. J’ai quasiment fait le holeshot en seconde manche, j’ai pu contrer des garçons comme Tixier ou Coldenhoff pendant quelques minutes pour finir sixième de cette manche, un résultat pleinement satisfaisant pour une première sortie en Elite MX1. »
Quentin Prugnières : « Je suis assez content du weekend, mais j’aurais bien sûr préféré gagner les deux manches. En seconde manche j’ai tout perdu en ratant mon départ, j’ai mis du temps à remonter sur une piste sèche et compliquée mais j’ai pu réduire mon retard sur le leader de 15 à 3 secondes. J’ai beaucoup travaillé cet hiver avec Steven Frossard qui est aujourd’hui mon entraineur, le courant est rapidement passé entre nous. »
Brian Moreau didn’t really start his first World Championship campaign as expected, as the representative of team Bud Racing Kawasaki and youngest rider of the MXGP circuit got injured during the timed practice session in Argentina. But there’s at least one positive point to bring back from this long trip: Brian could show that he has the speed to battle with the top guys of the category.
Organized this year again in Villa La Angostura, the opening round of the World Championship was too brief for Brian and the staff of the Bud Racing Team, as Brian Hsu injured didn’t do the trip. Discovering this track designed on a slippery land of volcanic origin during the free practice session, Brian put his Kawasaki in eighth position during the timed practice session in what was only his second GP after France last season. Back on the track at the end of the session Brian was testing another line in a corner when his front wheel slides; in the crash his wrist hit the ground, and the medical exams reveal a small crack which forced him to skip the race. Back in France earlier this week to have a dedicate treatment and continue to work on his physical condition, he should be back on his bike within three weeks.
The Team is also announcing the venue of a new rider Lorenzo LOCURCIO coming from Venezuela to race the MX2 GP’s in replacement of Brian HSU who sustained a small back injury few days before heading to Argentina. Lorenzo is actually racing in the USA and will head to France next week to prepare his first GP race in UK Matterley Basin. Welcome Lorenzo !
Stéphane Dassé: “We are of course disappointed after this weekend, as Brian show that he had all the tools to get good results in the World Championship. Hopefully the injury is not too serious and Brian will be back soon on the tracks, the team to be in three weeks time for the next round of the World Championship in Great Britain.”