MX Riders Arrive In Istanbul

Cycle News Staff | April 10, 2009

With this being the first ever visit of the FIM Motocross World Championship to Turkey and Istanbul, some of the riders decided to give the beautiful city a closer look.Two days ahead of the Grand Prix, Yamaha Red Bull De Carli’s Antonio Cairoli and Tanel Leok, Teka Suzuki Europe World MX2’s Yohei Kojima, KTM Factory Junior MX2’s Valentin Teillet, NGS’ Marvin Musquin, Kawasaki Racing’s Sebastien Pourcel and Bud Racing’s Gautier Paulin took a guided tour of Istanbul, visiting the city’s hotspots such as Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque.Photo: (Left to right) Tanel Leok, Sebastien Pourcel, Marvin Musquin, Valentin Teillet, Antonio Cairoli, Yohei Kojima, and Gautier Paulin pose in front of the Blue Mosque.”Istanbul was really nice,” Sebastien Pourcel said, “there were really many things to see. It is nice to know more about the geography and the history of this city. Visiting the Hagia Sofia and the Blue Mosque was nice as well, it is definitely one of those cities where you feel the pleasure of discovering things. I was impressed by the dimensions of Istanbul, it is really big and there are so many people around.””The mosques are really nice as well as the other buildings,” Marvin Musquin, winner of last weekend’s MX2 GP in Bulgaria, said. “I was impressed that Istanbul was this big, there were so many people walking in the city center. It was my first time here and I was amazed, definitely.”Gautier Paulin said, “I like seeing new countries and new cultures such as Istanbul is for me. I had never entered in a mosque-like building before and when I stepped into Hagia Sophia it was just immense! Maybe the whole Istanbul is not as busy as I saw this afternoon in the city centre area but what a fantastic city it is!””I come from a small and quiet town,” Tanel Leok said, “and I have to say that Istanbul is very busy, though I was happy about taking today’s tour. It is impressive to see how well preserved are the buildings that were built such a long time ago.”Antonio Cairoli said, “There is so much history in the many buildings of Istanbul. Even though we toured just for a few hours we could see so many interesting places, it was like taking a look at the Istanbul culture, I was imaging how this area could be back in the days.”