|Posted on May 23, 2018 at 3:55 AM|
The third round of the National Motocross Championship took place in Bloemfontein on Saturday. After a testing day on the track, the Red Bull KTM squad breathed a sigh of relief to put two orange riders on the podium and hold onto the Pro Mini red plate.
Kerim Fitz-Gerald arrived in Bloemfontein with the strong intention of climbing back up the championship ranks.
It was a tough round for the rider, who finished with a seventh overall place in MX1 after a fall in the first moto. Shaking off the disappointing result, he came out swinging to secure a spot on the MX2 podium with a third overall.
“It was a difficult day, but I don’t want to take anything away from the other riders. They’ve stepped things up a notch this season – so big ups to them for riding so well. I lost out on some valuable points today, but there are still four races left this season and a lot can happen,” said a hopeful Fitz-Gerald.
All eyes were on Jonathan Mlimi as he took his place at the Pro Mini start line with the red plate to defend.
The youngster was off to a shaky start after an unfortunate crash in the first moto, but managed to work his way back to fifth by the end of the heat. Determined to hold onto his championship lead, Mlimi set off guns blazing to take the win in the second moto.
With a hard-earned second place for the day, Mlimi was elated to have secured the red plate:
“My heart sank when I fell in the first moto, but there was no time to dwell on that. I jumped back on the bike and made some passes to finish with a fifth. I was more determined than ever in that second moto, and feel so relieved to have pulled off a win and held onto the red plate!” said Mlimi.
It was a solid day in the saddle for older brother Joshua Mlimi, who put on his best 2018 performance yet with a fourth place for the day.
After a slow start the season, he was elated to have narrowed the gap on the leading MX2 riders and get closer to realising his hope of stepping onto the podium.
“I feel like the other guys got a glimpse of what I’m capable of today. I’m happy to have pulled off a solid performance, and plan to keep building on this for the rest of the season,” he said.
Rounding off a challenging event for the Red Bull KTM team was a sixth place from Pro Mini’s Nate Mc Lellan and a ninth place in MX1 from Ross Branch.
“It was one of those days that the team would prefer not to talk about again. But this sport comes with the good and the bad, and we’re glad to have walked away with what we did. The next round is at our home track in Joburg, Terra Topia, so I’m excited to see how that will play out,” said team manager Darrel Fitz-Gerald.
Published by: KTM Media
Categories: FMN News South Africa