Jorge Zaragoza podiums in Suzuki RM125 debut

23rd April 2012

Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe's Jorge Zaragoza launched his 2012 UEM European Motocross Championship campaign on the RM125 with a podium finish and third position overall at Sevlievo in Bulgaria.

The seven-round European contest got underway at the second Grand Prix of 16 in the FIM Motocross World Championship and the Spanish teenager posted results of second and eighth to grab his first trophy under the international spotlight, in front of 15,000 spectators crowded around the excellent Sevlievo facility in eastern Bulgaria and under bright and occasionally cloudy skies. The hard-pack was bumpy, fast and slippery in places and saw largely similar lap-times throughout the classes as mistakes really made the difference in the positions near the front of the field.

Zaragoza rode to an excellent second position during what was a damp first moto on Saturday afternoon and then recovered from a first lap slip in the second race on Sunday morning to start an effective charge to eighth place. The Valencian was as far down as 26th after his mistake but found a route through the pack to reach the top 10 and secure his podium champagne.

In the MX2 class and riding the potent RM-Z250s, Harri Kullas and Petar Petrov were sixth and 14th overall. The Finn in particular had a very strong Grand Prix and is firmly on the path back to full fitness after his recent mineral imbalance diagnosis. Kullas made a fantastic start into second place in the first race and set an effective pace to finish fifth and equal his best ever GP moto classification. He couldn't achieve the same getaway in the second affair but a very proactive approach to the hard-pack saw him rise up to the top 10 and snare ninth by the time of the flag.

Petrov was noisily cheered on by the fans and his progress was easy to chart thanks to the rising cheers from the hillside of animated public. The Bulgarian rode through the discomfort of his recent leg pain to collect 12th and 13th positions.

Kullas is now ninth in the standings with 43 points: five behind Dylan Ferrandis and five ahead of Alessandro Lupino. Petrov is 13th and 14 points from the top 10. The team will move west and south to Fermo for the Grand Prix of Italy next week. The EMX125 series will also reconvene with the MX1 and MX2 classes on the Adriatic coast.

Harri Kullas:

"I'm really happy. I had been feeling down after Valkenswaard because I did not have the energy to push but we talked with the doctor and discussed what was wrong and then moved forward. I didn't ride at all after Holland and this weekend was the first time I got on the bike. I was happy with ninth in the qualification race and didn't expect that. The first start was great and I made ground in the first turn. My weakness in the past has been at the beginning of the races but this time I pushed and it worked out really well. I tried to tag onto the couple of guys who were a bit too quick for me but I found good lines and was feeling good. Fifth was really cool.

"I got stuck behind someone else in the second start and for the first two laps I was slow but I found my speed again. I was going well but then we had a small problem with the front brake and I had to be careful on the downhills. I had a bit of luck with the lappers and passed Ferrandis on the final corner, but you know, it's a race until the very end. I can't be happier with fifth and ninth for this GP."

Petar Petrov:

"The results were not so bad but I wanted to do better to be honest. I didn't get the starts to be any higher today. My speed was not there but I've had two-three weeks off recovering from the injury and I think I will come back stronger and more confident for Italy. It was really nice to hear all the people cheering. It would have been better if I could have finished in the top 10 for them but I'm thankful for all the support."

Jorge Zaragoza:

"I'm really happy! I made a mistake in the first moto on the start and the second moto was pretty stressful because I started well but I made a stupid crash and lost a lot of time. I was in last place but worked hard and it turned out well. I hope we can continue in this line of results in Fermo."


MX2 Moto1: 1. Joel Roelants (BEL, Kawasaki), 39:43.795; 2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:09.286; 3. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:17.680; 4. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, KTM), +0:24.904; 5. Harri Kullas (FIN, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe), +0:39.615; 6. Max Anstie (GBR, Honda), +0:44.290; 7. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), +0:50.642; 8. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:53.251; 9. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), +0:54.123; 10. Michael Leib (USA, Yamaha), +1:09.346. 12. Petar Petrov (BUL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe), +1:16.367.

MX2 Moto2: 1. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), 39:24.388; 2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:02.231; 3. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, KTM), +0:43.372; 4. Joel Roelants (BEL, Kawasaki), +0:52.201; 5. Max Anstie (GBR, Honda), +0:59.616; 6. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Husqvarna), +1:18.428; 7. Jose Butron (ESP, KTM), +1:23.833; 8. Alexander Tonkov (RUS, Honda), +1:26.744; 9. Harri Kullas (FIN, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe), +1:29.499; 10. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), +1:29.660; 11. Michael Leib (USA, Yamaha), +1:37.411; 12. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), +1:41.665; 13. Petar Petrov (BUL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe), +1:44.471.

MX2 Overall Result: 1. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), 45 points; 2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 44 p.; 3. Joel Roelants (BEL, Kawasaki), 43 p.; 4. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, KTM), 38 p.; 5. Max Anstie (GBR, Honda), 31 p.; 6. Harri Kullas (FIN, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe), 28 p.; 7. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), 24 p.; 8. Alexander Tonkov (RUS, Honda), 23 p.; 9. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), 23 p.; 10. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Husqvarna), 22 p. 14. Petar Petrov (BUL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe), 17 p.

MX2 World Championship standings (after 2 of 16 rounds): 1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 94 points; 2. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), 87 p.; 3. Joel Roelants (BEL, Kawasaki), 85 p.; 4. Jeremy van Horebeek (BEL, KTM), 74 p.; 5. Max Anstie (GBR, Honda), 57 p.; 6. Jake Nicholls (GBR, KTM), 51 p.; 7. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KTM), 48 p.; 8. Dylan Ferrandis (FRA, Kawasaki), 48 p.; 9. Harri Kullas (FIN, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe), 43 p.; 10. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, Husqvarna), 38 p. 13. Petar Petrov (BUL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe), 24 p.

European EMX125 Overall result (after 1 of 7 rounds): 1. Tim Gajser (SLO, KTM), 50 points; 2. Davide Bonini (ITA, KTM), 42 p.; 3. Jorge Zaragoza Beltran (ESP, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe), 35 p.; 4. Henry Jacobi (GER, KTM), 34 p.; 5. Anton Lundgren (SWE, KTM), 32 p.


 


 

 

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