MotoOnline.com.au brings you the latest from the European motocross scene.
It has been a rocky start to the 2016 season in the European motocross scene with big name riders seemingly dropping like flies before the opening round of the MXGP championship has even began. It’s not unusual for riders to injure themselves pre-season, but the list of names currently injured is quite star-studded.
The biggest name of all on the list is Red Bull KTM’s Antonio Cairoli, the multi-time world champion is yet to return to the bike with injured ribs forcing him to sit on the sidelines in hopes of returning for the season opening MXGP round at Qatar on 27 February.
Next up on the list of big name injured riders is reigning world MXGP champion Romain Febvre. The Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP team rider crashed at the second round of the Italian Championship resulting in a cut to his arm. The 24-year-old took a trip to hospital to have it closed up and will be sidelined until the opening round.
Who’s next? Clement Desalle found himself being added to the injured list recently following a nasty fall at Valence in France. The Monster Energy Kawasaki rider went down while attempting a pass for the lead that went very wrong. The Belgian rider has suffered a reported broken arm and his expected return to the bike is yet to be confirmed.
Unfortunately this week news broke of New Zealand’s Ben Townley also being added to the injured list following the Valence event. The Team Suzuki World MXGP rider was reportedly taken down by Red Bull KTM’s Jeffrey Herlings in an overly aggressive move according to team manager Stefan Everts.
“The pass on Ben by Herlings was unnecessarily aggressive,” said Everts. “It’s a pity to see that things like that happen as Ben hurt his knee. There are already so many injured riders and the season hasn’t even started yet.”
Townley will undergo further scans this week to completely understand the severity of his knee injury. Let’s hope it’s nothing to severe and the Kiwi veteran can line up for the opening round.
Just when you thought that was it, Rui Goncavles and former MX2 world champion Jordi Tixier are also on the injured list heading into round one, it’s a worrying amount of fast riders sidelined before the racing schedule has even started. Fingers crossed each and every rider will recover quickly, hop back on the bike and put on an entertaining MXGP season for the fans and media personnel like us here at MotoOnline.com.au.