DESALLE, ROCZEN, AND NILSSON DOMINATE THE GLEN HELEN USGP
By: Jordan Powell
Photos by: Steve Emter
Under constant changing weather conditions, Clement Desalle, Ken Roczen, and Mats Nilsson took home the overall win at the Glen Helen USGP in Devore, California, on Sunday. The 1-1 finish for Desalle moved him into first place in points, and he now leads Max Nagl by six points. Ken Roczen finished off the day with a 1-1 finish as well, and he moves back into first in points. It was Mats Nilsson who led the first race of the day in the muddy and slick conditions. His 3-1 was enough to give him the overall, and he continues to carry the red number one plate.
Clement Desalle carried in some momentum from Saturday as he came across the finish on the first lap in first place. Immediately behind him was Antonio Cairoli, who didn’t qualify inside the top-10 yesterday. Anthony Boissiere held onto third for a lap until Kevin Strijbos caught up and passed him on the following lap. About halfway through, Cairoli put in a charge for the lead, but a mistake following the finish line jump set him back a couple seconds. It wasn’t all over for Desalle , though. On the final lap, Cairoli once again put in a charge, and he found his way onto Desalle’s rear wheel. However, Cairoli spun out going up Yamaha Hill, and Desalle was able to take the win.
As the riders crossed the finish line on the first lap, it was Moto 1 winner Clement Desalle who led the pack of riders into the tricky rhythm section. Right behind him was Kevin Strijbos, Evgeny Bobryshev, and Rui Goncalves. As for Antonio Cairoli, he went down on the first lap and ended up 22nd when he crossed the finish line. Lap after lap, Desalle maintained his lead, but it was on lap eight when Strijbos lost second place to the fast charging Max Nagl. When the checkers flew, though, it was Desalle who took the overall with a 1-1 finish. Nagl finished the race in second, and Evgeny Bobryshev took his first podium of his career with a third place finish.
In the press conference Desalle said, “It was a great weekend for me and the track was dangerous. I tried to keep my bike on two wheels, and I just tried to ride safe and in control.” Max Nagl went on to say, “It’s always been a good feeling to go from the back to the front. If I stayed up at the front from the beginning, it would have been a lot easier for me. I’m always happy if I’m on the podium.”
1. Clement Desalle 1-1 (Suz)
2. Max Nagl 3-2 (KTM)
3. Evgeny Bobryshev 6-3 (Hon)
4. Kevin Strijbos 4-5 (Suz)
5. Antonio Cairoli 2-11 (KTM)
6. David Philippaerts 5-9 (Yam)
7. Rui Goncalves 12-4 (Hon)
8. Jonathan Barragan 9-8 (Kaw)
9. Anthony Boissiere 7-12 (Yam)
10. Christian Craig 8-13 (Hon)
11. Shaun Simpson 16-6 (Hon)
12. Xavier Boog 14-10 (Kaw)
13. Steve Ramon DNF-7 (Suz)
14. Jason Dougan 11-17 (Yam)
15. Davide Guarneri 13-16 (Kaw)
16. Tanel Leok 15-15 (TM)
17. Gregory Aranda 17-14 (Kaw)
18. Steven Frossard 10-DNF (Yam)
19. Carlos Campano 18-19 (Yam)
20. Weston Peick DNF-18 (Kaw)
Carrying the same speed from the day before, Red Bull/Teka/KTM’s Ken Roczen grabbed the holeshot at the start of the first moto and never looked back. Trying to challenge him was his teammate, Jeffrey Herlings. Herlings couldn’t match the speed of Roczen, and he started to fall off the pace. Arnaud Tonus made his way into third place after the first lap, but after a mistake, Harri Kullas moved into third on his Monster Energy Yamaha. However, it was on the seventh lap when Max Anstie navigated his way into the top three, which set Kullas back to fourth. At the end of the 13 laps, Roczen controlled the lead from start to finish, and he took an easy win in moto one.
When the gates dropped in Moto 2, Roczen and Herlings went one and two as they exited the Talladega. It took a couple laps for Roczen to really pull away from his KTM teammate, but after four laps, the gap started to widen between the two. Improving from his first moto was CLS/Monster Energy/Kawasaki’s Tommy Searle. From start to finish, Searle sat in third for the 14 laps. Right behind him was his teammate Max Anstie, but the Kawi rider lost the fourth position on the 12th lap to Zach Osborne.
After the race Roczen said, “This dirt was pretty soft, so I knew Jeffrey was going to be hard to race against. I got good starts, though, and we all just tried to ride a smart race. It’s nice to keep the red plate, but I just want to go race by race because it’s a long season. The warm up was muddy, but it was actually kind of fun. By the time the second moto came, I saw them watering the track.” Jeffrey went on to say, “First moto Ken was fast so I pretty much let him go. Second moto, I knew it was going to get rough, and I figured I would get him there. To be honest, I thought he was going to get tired, but he didn’t. Other than that, I’m pretty satisfied with my results.”