News Report 16 July 2006
South Africa

2006 GP of Sun City, South Africa

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Sun City
att 25300
07 / 16 / 2006
Time to be confirmed

Cairoli takes first victory of 2006


MX2 World Champion Antonio Cairoli climbed the top step of the podium for the first time this season at a hot Grand Prix of South Africa. The De Carli Yamaha rider completed an excellent tenth round of the FIM World Championship for the manufacturer and only the second time this term that Yamaha have owned both classes on the same day.
  The Sun City circuit was again a gleaming picture of good organisation and attention to detail. In its third and final year of hosting the South African round the venue even counted on an improved terrain, perhaps the biggest weak point of past editions. Softer dirt from the dark clay texture meant less dust and more grip.

Cairoli was masterful in qualification and enacted a text-book performance by leading from gate to flag in the second heat, earned second pick of slot on the start line for the two 35 minute and 2 lap motos. The first race saw the World Champion circulating in a lonely third after a dodgy start meant that he lost the back of David Philippaerts and Tyla Rattray disputing the win. He pushed through to third despite having trouble with a bent plastic radiator guard catching the bars of the 250F because of an off-track excursion. The top three finish was a decent platform from which to try for the overall and he defeated local favourite Rattray by winning the second moto in style for his sixth race trophy from the twenty held so far.

Kenneth Gundersen was visiting South Africa for the first time having missed the last two years due to injury. The first moto saw the Norwegian clatter a haybale that had been dragged into his path and he fell heavily onto his left hand. The Ricci Racing rider needed medical attention at the side of the track and will now head back to Italy tomorrow night for an examination on a possible broken bone in his wrist.
Alessio Chiodi showed signs that he is coming back to the decent speed he showed before a fast practice crash in Japan left the former World Champion with an injured knee. The Italian is still missing race fitness however and ended the day twelfth overall after a set of average starts.

Davide Guarneri slipped off his 250 in the first qualification heat race yesterday and injured his right knee. The Italian was a reduced force but scored ninth overall with moto finishes of ninth and 12th.

Antonio Cairoli, Team Yamaha De Carli:
“For sure I am very happy about this win because for many GPs I have been close to victory but one mistake has cost me dear. I managed to take one moto in the past but then finished too far back in the other. It is the first time I have won in South Africa. I had some trouble with the radiator guard in the first moto after I jumped off the track; it was difficult to balance and I lost a lot of time. It was a fast race so I thought about the points. I really liked the track because the mud was softer this year and there were many jumps.”

Alessio Chiodi, Yamaha Team Ricci:
“The knee is a little bit better but my physical condition is not so good because I have not been able to train properly recently. I hope things will get better, it is coming back slowly.”