McFarlane Wins in Grand Prix of Italy

| June 14, 2004

In front of around 20,000 spectators, Australia’s Andrew McFarlane finally reached his dream of taking a Grand Prix victory. The rider from Queensland went 1-1 in the MX2 class at the Grand Prix of Italy and became only the third Australian rider in Grand Prix history to win a Grand Prix overall, the others being Chad Reed and Jeff Leisk.

“For sure this is what I have been working for,” McFarlane said. “I knew with the series entering the second half I had to do something. I needed to pick it up. I have always believed in my ability, it was just a matter of going out and doing it.”

Finishing second to McFarlane in Italy were two crowd favorites Alessio Chiodi and Claudio Federici. All three podium riders were Yamaha-mounted. Series leader Ben Townley, from New Zealand, scored a third and an eighth after crashing on the first corner of the second moto.

In the MX1 class, it was Yamaha rider Stefan Everts who got the overall, going 2-1 for victory ahead of Kevin Strijbos of the Suzuki factory team and Martin Honda rider Mickael Pichon and. New Zealand’s Josh Coppins finished fourth overall in the MX1 scoring 6-3 results.

Strijbos, who won the first moto, gave Suzuki its first GP moto win for its 450cc four-stroke. Strijbos has taken over the testing duties on the 450 while Joel Smets recovers from a knee injury and an illness.

MX2 O/A: 1. Andrew McFarlane (50); 2. Claudio Federici (36); 3. Alessio Chiodi (35); 4. Antonio Cairoli (34); 5. Ben Townley (33).

MX2 Points: 1. Ben Townley (352); 2. Stephen Sword (306); 3. Tyla Rattray (291); 4. Andrew McFarlane (260); 5. Antonio Cairoli (221).

MX1 O/A: 1. Stefan Everts (47pts); 2. Kevin Strijbos (43); 3. Mickael Pichon (42); 4. Josh Coppins (35); 5. Steve Ramon (34).

MX1 Points: 1. Stefan Everts (403/5wins); 2. Josh Coppins (301/1); 3. Mickael Pichon (294/1); 4. Cedric Melotte (291/1); 5. Steve Ramon (281).

By Freelance