Herlings wins cracking qualifier in Russia!
What a qualifying race in Russia that was! Anyone of six riders could have won and that doesn’t include pole-setter Tim Gajser who went down hard in turn one!
Romain Febvre took the early lead ahead of teammate Van Horebeek but the Frenchman went down allowing Van Horebeek to take the lead with Herlings, Febvre, Desalle, then an aggressive Cairoli all nose to tail looking for the win.
But Febvre went down again as Herlings took the lead from Van Horebeek in a ballsy move but even the Dutchman couldn’t couldn’t get away as Julien Lieber joined the back of the freight train. Cairoli was on the charge but ran out of front wheel traction with two laps to go while third and went down in a tight right handed as he looked for a way by Van Horebeek.
It meant Lieber was up to third in a superb ride with Van Horebeek chasing winner Herlings over the line.
Herlings admitted he had a sleepless night and stressful morning trying to get his gear bag but he was all smiles at the finish after a great race on a somewhat old school, fast and flowing hard pack track that allowed the rider plenty of line choice.
The only negative was poor Shaun Simpson who crashed hard on a fast part of the circuit and was surrounded by the medics for quite some time. Let’s hope the tough Scotsman is okay.