Jeffrey Herlings won both motos in the MX2 class. Photgraphy by Ray Archer
The Grand Prix of The Netherlands played out on the sandy Valkenswaard Circuit in The Netherlands, Monday, April 1, with the Red Bull KTM Factory teammates coming away with the overall wins - Cairoli in MX1 and Herlings in MX2.
Cairoli, however, might not necessarily have been the fastest MX1 rider on the day. His teammate Ken de Dycker was flying in the Dutch sand, too.
De Dycker caught and passed both Evgeny Bobryshev and Cairoli to take the lead in the first MX1 moto and looked to be headed to the win, but a mistake cost him two positions and would finish out the moto behind winner Cairoli and Bobryshev, the Russian factory-backed Honda rider.
In race two, De Dycker moved to the front again after passing fast starter Bobryshev and Suzuki rider Kevin Strijbos. This time, De Dycker made no mistakes and held on for the win, but he did have to fight off Cairoli at the end.
But the overall went to Cairoli, his 1-2 besting De Dycker's 3-1 on the day.
Bobryshev slipped to fourth in the second moto but his 2-4 was good enough to get him on the podium when all was said and done.
Strijbos ended up fourth overall with a 7-3, followed by German Honda rider Max Nagl, who went 6-6 on the day.
Belgian Clement Desalle, the closest rider to Cairoli in the points standings, went 8-5 for seventh overall.
After three rounds, Cairoli already enjoys a fairly comfortable points lead over Desalle, 142-116. De Dycker is just one point behind Desalle in third.
In MX2 action, KTM's Jordi Tixier of France gave the local favorite, Herlings, a race in both motos. Tixier led the first half of the first moto before Herlings got him and all but the last three laps of the second moto before the defending champ swept past him.
Herlings' 1-1 kept his so far perfect season in tact, while Tixier's 2-2 gave him second overall.
Great Britain's Jake Nichols made it a KTM sweep in the MX2 class, his 4-3 giving him third overall.
Great Britain's Max Anstie, riding under an AMA license, enjoyed his best finish of the season when he took third in the first moto. A sixth, however, in the second moto denied him a shot of a podium finish. Instead, he had to be content with fourth overall.
Rounding out the top five overall was The Netherlands' Glenn Coldenhoff with 5-4 finishes on his KTM.
Herlings is already way out in front of the MX2 class. He now has a 49-point lead over Tixier, who is just three points ahead of Romain Febvre and four ahead of Jose Butron.
1. Antonio Cairoli (KTM) 1-2
2. Ken de Dycker (KTM) 3-1
3. Evgeny Bobryshev (Hon) 2-4
4. Kevin Strijbos (Suz) 7-3
5. Max Nagl (Hon) 6-6
6. Gautier Paulin (Kaw) 5-7
7. Clement Desalle (Suz) 8-5
8. Tanel Leok (Hon) 4-11
9. Tommy Searle (Kaw) 10-9
10. Rui Goncalves (KTM) 13-8
1. Jeffrey Herlings (KTM) 1-1
2. Jordi Tixier (KTM) 2-2
3. Jake Nicholls (KTM) 4-3
4. Max Anstie (Suz) 3-6
5. Glenn Coldenhoff (KTM) 5-4
6. Alexander Tonkov (Hon) 11-8
7. Mel Pocock (Yam) 10-9
8. Priit Tatsep (KTM) 9-11
9. Pascal Rauchenecker (KTM) 13-10
10. Romain Febvre (KTM) 0-5