Pichon on Top in Belgium

| June 28, 2004

Two-time World Motocross Champion Mickael Pichon captured the overall victory at the Grand Prix of Belgium over the weekend. The Martin Honda rider produced consistent 1-2 results and showed home track favorite Stefan Everts a clean pair of heels in the opening moto after Everts crashed on a downhill section. Everts fought back to win the second moto, but his sixth place in the opening heat cost him any chance of taking victory around the very tough circuit in Neeroeteren. Everts did, however, finish in second place overall and extended his lead in the MX1 Championship points race. Third in the MX1 class was another Belgian Steve Ramon on the KTM factory 450cc machine. Pichon was happy to return to the MX1 podium.

“After the accident in Germany it is nice to fight back,” Pichon said. “It was difficult today, and Stefan showed great speed in both races, I knew, however, when he crashed that all I had to do was stay on the bike and I would win the overall.”

In the MX2, class Tyla Rattray of the CHAMP KTM team took his third overall win of the year, going 2-4 after his teammate Ben Townley suffered more mechanical problems. Townley won the opening MX2 heat, but DNFed the second moto after his bike began smoking and lost power. Also out of luck in the MX2 class was Scotland’s Stephen Sword. The Kawasaki factory rider failed to finish either moto, crashing in the first and DNFing with a broken bike in the second.

Second in the MX2 class went to former World 125cc Champion Mickael Maschio on the Jan de Groot Kawasaki. Maschio finished with 5-2 scored, while third place was American rider Jeff Dement on the SRS Honda. The performance by Rattray was very impressive, as he had crashed during the week training, injuring his shoulder.

“I crashed while Mountain biking and landed hard on my shoulder,” Rattray said. “I really came here looking for a top 10 place, so to win the Grand Prix was a huge bonus.”

For Dement it was a nice return to the GP podium. The American had not made a Grand Prix podium since 2000, when he finished third in the Grand Prix of Croatia. The Neeroeteren circuit was perfect for the SRS Honda rider, with many Supercross type obstacles.

“I’ve spent two years injured,” Dement said. “To be able to race like I did today it really good for me and the team. I’m sure with a little extra work I can give these younger kids some good races in the future.”

MX1 O/A: 1. Mickael Pichon (47); 2. Stefan Everts (40); 3. Steve Ramon (36); 4. Josh Coppins (36); 5. Kevin Strijbos (36); 6. Brian Jorgensen (35); 7. Luigi Seguy (28); 8. Tanel Leok (28); 9. Sven Breugelmans (20); 10. Julian Bill (18)

MX2 O/A: 1. Tyla Rattray (40); 2. Mickael Maschio (38); 3. Jeff Dement (38); 4. Sebastien Pourcel (35); 5. Patrick Caps (31); 6. Andrew McFarlane (25); 7. Ben Townley (25); 8. Marvin Van Daele (22); 9. Alessio Chiodi (17); 10. Manuel Priem (16)

By Freelance