Italian ace moves a step closer to the record books with latest championship.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antonio Cairoli has said that his 2017 campaign that saw him wrap up his ninth world title last weekend has been of the best of his career.
Cairoli proved to be a strong force all year long, outclassing the field the extend a comfortable 83-point advantage despite one round remaining.
The Italian, who lodged 2-6 results at Assen last weekend to seal the title, knew he wasn’t the favourite at the beginning of the year, but with eight previous championships under his belt, he knew what needed to be done in order to add another to the tally.
“We didn’t start as a favourite for sure this year,” Cairoli reflected. “I know what I work for and I know what it takes to have a solid and consistent championship so we made it and I am really happy about this.
“It was an amazing season, I think one of my best, it is amazing that I can still improve after 14, now 15 years in the world championship, I really am proud of this. I just want to enjoy this title, we had a very good weekend especially today, but I’m really happy because the championship is the most important thing for me.
“To take it here in Holland with all the fans it was very nice, the track was amazing even with the rain it still worked out and it was very technical, the organisers did a really good job so nothing could be better.”
The championship puts Cairoli just one title of shy of matching motocross great Stefan Everts’ record, who earned an astounding 10 world titles throughout his career. Everts says he could only congratulate the Italian if he were to be demoted as the record holder, however it would sadden the now Suzuki World MXGP team manager.
“If he gets the record I can only congratulate him,” said Everts. “It would hurt me a little of course, because I want to be the best ever, but records are there to be broken. You have to accept it, I have no problem if Tony is the guy to beat my record, because I have a lot of respect for him, and he has a lot of respect for what I did.”
The final round of the MXGP World Championship is scheduled to take place this weekend at Villars sous Ecot in France.