Jonathan McCready: Was it a take out? Yes, but did Herlings mean to do it? I don’t think it was his initial intention but he used it as plan B. It looked like Herlings meant to beat Cairoli to the inside of the corner but because they bumped then it was a race out of the corner, and by that point neither was giving in!
At that stage Herlings was going to take Cairoli’s line regardless of the consequences, at that point I don’t think Herlings was bothered if they made contact and Cairoli went down, he just wanted the lead and the win – and he made it happen.
Herlings then apologiesed about the move and said he didn’t mean to make contact but I am not sure that will wash with Cairoli who branded the move, ‘unnecessary.’
Cairoli was understandably frustrated and the big question is will Cairoli go for retaliation or will being Red Bull KTM teammates make things more complicated.
Cairoli is riding fantastic right now, he has the fitness for the whole moto and this will probably only add to his motivation as they head towards France and his home sand race at Ottobiano. Pit Beirer might not want to watch the next few rounds!
Andy McKinstry: I’d be inclined to call it a racing incident. Did Herlings go in aggressive? Absolutely, but did he intentionally mean to take Cairoli down? I’m not so sure.
Let’s not forget there’s been a number of examples were Carioli has went in hard on Herlings too like in Arco this year and Lommel last year. Sure, Herlings didn’t go down but they were aggressive moves and Herlings backed off. I’m totally fine with these sort of moves though as long as it’s not dangerous and I don’t think any of the moves between the pair have been so far. What we saw in the UK was two world champions who didn’t want to give each other an inch.
I’d say something like this has been coming for a while but it was unfortunate for Cairoli that he was the one to go down in a heap. This could also just be the beginning of it all, there’s always been tension between the pair but the incident in the UK might just take things to a whole new level and for the fans it’s absolutely brilliant to watch.
The racing between the pair of them in the UK was just great to watch and the fans got their value for money. Let’s just hope both of them can stay fit for the entire series and they provide plenty more racing like they did in the UK. It’s hard to believe the half way point in the series is only this weekend so there’s still so much racing to be done.
Cairoli will be motivated more than ever to beat Herlings outright, can he do it in France this weekend? It would be the best response possible for the nine times world champ and I certainly wouldn’t put it past him.