Best things from Charlotte GP!
Cooper Webb V Jeffrey Herlings: We finally got to see the best two 250 riders in the world bang bars at Charlotte. Herlings drew first blood as he passed Webb in the first moto and pulled away for the win. However, an angry Webb came out for the second moto and he came from outside the top fifteen to end up winning the moto passing Herlings in the process. Webb rode an unreal race and said himself he feels that was the best he has ever rode. Herlings who has only been back on the bike a few weeks just didn’t have enough for the win. The next time these two will meet is the Motocross of Nations, both will be on 450’s and Herlings will want to set the record straight there. This will be an exciting match up at the Nations for sure!
World Champions crowned: Jeffrey Herlings and Tim Gajser finally got crowned champions in Charlotte. It has been a tough few years for Herlings with so many injuries but he’s finally got his third MX2 world title in the bag! Gajser has followed in Romain Febvre’s footsteps and won the MXGP World Championship as a rookie and did it in style only finishing off the podium twice so far. Next year we will get to see Herlings and Gajser race together again in the MXGP class. It’s going to be exciting! Will Gajser be able to defend his title or will Herlings be the third rookie to win the title in three years? We can’t wait to see these two go at it again!
Depth in MXGP: The depth in the MXGP series is pretty crazy and whenever you add some of the top American’s in the talent on show is just insane. The American fans got a treat to see riders from both series racing in Charlotte. To put into perspective how deep the field was in Charlotte, we saw riders in the calibre of Shaun Simpson, Jake Nicholls, Dean Wilson and Phil Nicoletti all battling just to get into the top fifteen. Nicoletti, who finished fifth in the AMA National series didn’t ever look like breaking into the top ten – crazy talent was on show during the weekend!
The track: After the decision was made to cancel the qualification day at the Charlotte GP there were concerns that the GP could turn into a mud race. However, it ended up perfect for the main race day and it was absolutely the right decision to change it to a one day format so that the track was in good shape. Justin Barclay and his team did a good job on the track, it was a little one lined and hard to pass but it was certainly better than a mud race! I also support the idea of building a new track for the US GP, that way the American’s won’t have such a big advantage over the GP riders.
Good crowd: There were more fans there than first anticipated. Youthstream are reporting that around 15k attended the event which isn’t bad at all and is certainly a big improvement from the previous USA GP’s. It was great seeing Americans get behind their riders and that is what drove Webb to get the job done in the second moto. Hopefully the American fans continue to support the US GP’s which are a pretty big deal, it would be great to see an even bigger crowd next year.
Article: Andy McKinstry