Page 1



/// SUMMER 2012








.83 /// SUMMER 2012



5 Editorial



6–10 Season




12–13 Interview

Todd Jendro


15 Public






ement neutre




/// SUMMER 2012

SwissClimate 16–21 MX1, MX2, MX3 season round-up… Engineering & Investment

Publishing Director: Olivier Godallier


22–23 Chiara

Chief Editor: Isabelle Larivière Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme 11, route Suisse – 1295 Mies – Suisse Tel : +41-22 950 95 00 – Fax : +41-22 950 95 01 @ : Website :



24–26 FIM Photos:confirme l'utilisation Cover: Good-Shoot réduction d'émissions, générés par Racing de: s de qualité,Yamaha à hauteur Simon Cudby

Junior Motocross


28–29 Climbing

Feld Motor Sports Ulf Eriksson Nuno Laranjeira Juan Pablo Acevedo Youthstream/SuperMoto Roger Lohrer aque gaz à effet Zanzani/Nikon de serre est converti en équivalent CO2 par at. Eric Malherbe/Libre Latitude FIM/Marc Pétrier Christopher Horne Stan Perec


31–33 SuperMoto,

Veteran MX, Sidecar MX 34–35 Monster Energy FIM Motocross of Nations The killing sands…



Lay-out & Printing: IMPRIMERIE SRO-KUNDIG S.A 49, chemin de l'Etang CH - 1219 Châtelaine

Environmental Ambassadors Spreading inspiration & awareness

36–38 FIM

FIM Magazine n°83

isse 11

Past issues available on request


The articles published in this magazine do not necessarily reflect the official position of the FIM.

40–41 TAG

The content of this publication is based on the best knowledge and information available at the the articles were written. ététimeobtenues dans le cadre du projet

sions ont The copying of articles and photos even l Nadu, Indien partially is forbidden unless permission has been atisfait toutes les exigences du and reference requested from the FIM in advance is made to the source (© FIM). ary Emission Reductions), VCS.

n: SC2012101103

ie le droit d'utiliser le label ci-dessous

the ladder

Heuer: Timing Expert



2012 FIM Motocamp



A winning formula



Past makes success


52–55 Fabian 57–58 ROAD








Training generations of experts - the FIM as motorcycling’s “alma mater” The soundness and strength of any organisation or company depend in a fundamental way on its capital and its capacity to manage that capital. The FIM is a sports organisation and its visible assets are motorcycling competitions. However, there is more to it than that. Its greatest – and least visible – capital is its expertise. Motorcycling sports events are very complex to organise. There are thousands of motorcycling competition circuits and tracks around the world, but only about 200 of them, across all disciplines, are of international standard. Competitions often need hundreds of people performing a host of different roles. If any one of them does not do his or her job properly, there can be problems, sometimes very serious ones. The form taken by these competitions, as we witness them live at the circuit or on television,is the fruit of many years of experience accumulated by so many people who have devoted their efforts to creating, applying and improving the rules. The preparation of the officials, at all levels of responsibility (judges, clerk of the course, doctors, marshals, technicians, etc.) depends firstly on seminars and then on hands-on experience on the ground. We have asked ourselves many times whether we are doing enough. The reply was always “Maybe”. But for a Federation like ours that has a presence throughout the world; that is facing new challenges and pressure to do our job efficiently from our commercial partners (promoters) and the public; and that is in contact with the local authorities of so many countries and with the media, who are ever more attentive to the quality of what we do, the reply “Maybe” is not enough.

As we reflected upon these things, we came up with the idea that the FIM needs to be the “alma mater” of world motorcycling, the “old school” through which all those who help to administer it pass. And out of this idea, the FIM Academy was born. All the work that goes into training our officials should take place under the aegis of what we now call the FIM Academy. The FIM Academy started to operate just this year, and like any institution of its kind and just like a university, it will take a few years before it can be recognised as a first-rate centre for study and learning. Our plans are ambitious and are not limited to preparing officials all over the world. The instructors themselves need to improve and we need to change the teaching methods and create different levels of learning, for volunteers and for professionals. Even the Board members can acquire new knowledge that will be useful to them in the performance of their roles. In addition to “training camp” programmes for young riders, we are also envisaging setting up courses to improve the way teams are run. Let me say again, this is a really ambitious programme. The FIM Academy is just beginning its work, but in the future it will undoubtedly become our Federation’s principal source of progress.

Vito Ippolito FIM President

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 5





FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2





The venue: Las Vegas, Nevada; the date: 5 May 2012... Sports for the masses! The Supercross warriors enter the Sam Boyd Stadium for their final combat of the season. ///

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 7


There was no stopping him! Villopoto charges to a second consecutive AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, title! ///

It was hailed as “the best ever” with four riders going into the last round in Las Vegas, all of them tied within 23 points. In the end, Ryan Villopoto/Kawasaki finished on top (338), Chad Reed/Honda was a close second (334), Ryan Dungey/Suzuki took third (328) and James Stewart/ Yamaha had to settle for fourth (301). Rookie Trey Canard/Honda (255) was a distant fifth but he had to miss the three


last rounds because of injury. Take away the injury and he could have been a close contender in Sin City.

Moreover, the “silly season” saw some interesting moves. Villopoto and Jake Weimer stayed put at Kawasaki but got a new team manager: Dan Fahie. Chad Reed’s privateer team was “upgraded” with Honda factory support. Ryan Dungey switched to KTM and hooked up with his mentor Roger De Coster once more. James Stewart stayed in the Yamaha ranks but signed with

Joe Gibbs Racing, together with Davey Millsaps. Justin Brayton joined Trey Canard at Honda. Some new teams appeared in the paddock. Championships-winning team manager Larry Brooks and former Supercross Champion Jeremy McGrath joined forces under the red Honda banner; their rider was Andrew Short (ex-KTM). The second team was on Kawasaki. “What else?”, you will say, knowing that it was headed up by another former Supercross Champion, Jeff Ward, and fielded Josh Grant who had switched from red to green. © Yamaha Racing




Rise and fall at Yamaha: Stewart (7) had the speed but he could not deliver. It was Millsaps' consistency (18) that got the "blues" in second spot in the final standings. ///

FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2


Having all this in mind, it is no wonder that everybody was looking forward to an exciting 2012 season. Ticket sales skyrocketed and the season opener in Anaheim was run in front of a “full house”. So, then came round1/Anaheim I on 7 January. And guess what?

Missing in action… Trey Canard, who was not fully recovered yet. He made a brief comeback in rounds 2/Phoenix and 3/Los Angeles, only to leave the scene injured again. One contender gone… A sign of things to come?


Anyhow, reigning Champ Villopoto took a very convincing win and proved that he was not planning on handing over his number one plate to anybody else. But the war was on because the next three rounds were won respectively by Ryan Dungey, Chad Reed and James Stewart. But even more surprisingly, Dungey’s win not only put KTM in the Supercross class winners’ circle for the first time ever, it also handed him the red number plate… yes, the new tandem leading the points table. Not for long, however because he had to hand

over that plate to Chad Reed after round 4/Oakland. By that time, Villopoto must have decided that “enough was enough”; he put in a tally of three consecutive wins (rounds 5/Anaheim II, 6/San Diego and 7/Arlington) and took control. And that is when another contender went down and left the scene: Chad Reed. Villopoto, in the meantime, continued his charge; he put in a second in round  8/Atlanta (where Dungey won) and a first in round 9/St-Louis. The Championship now looked more and more like a duel between the two Ryans, separated by a slim 13 points. A battered James Stewart was struggling in third position and already lying 53 points behind the points leader. That is when Ryan Dungey was sidelined by a crash in what was supposed to be a routine practice session during the week; and that was the end of his hopes for the Championship! It was a wake-up call for Stewart, who took a solid win in round 10/Daytona in


front of his team mate Davey Millsaps. Was this to be the return of James Stewart? Unfortuately not, as James went down for good in 11/Indianapolis. Another one bit the dust… Villopoto was now without any real challenger. Sure, Millsaps put in very honourable results but neither he – nor anybody else - could match the Kawasaki rider’s speed. So, it came as no surprise that Ryan V was on top of the game in rounds 11/Indianapolis, 12/Toronto, 13/Houston (where he took “Gold”) and 14/New Orleans. Round 15/Seattle saw the return to action of Ryan Dungey (still holding fourth position in the standings) and it meant the end of the line for another rider. Yes, Ryan Villopoto – the newly crowned 2012 Champion and “last man standing” – went down too and left the scene. It was the perfect opportunity for Andrew Short, who took his first ever Supercross victory and it put a smile on team manager Larry Brooks’ face. After all, his rider had been missing through rounds 6 to 13 and it was also a first for his new team!

Dungey and "the beast", a picture says a thousand words! Lap 9; Dungey (5) leads Weimer (21), Windham (14), Canard (14) and Short (29). ///

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 9





Following the single most successful season in the history of the sport in 2011, Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto continued his current reign as the world’s most prolific rider by capturing his second straight Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, inside Houston’s Reliant Stadium. Villopoto’s ninth win of the 2012 season, and the 24th of his Supercross Class career, was also a historic one as it vaulted Villopoto into the realm of the Supercross elite. Villopoto’s backto-back titles are the first since Ricky Carmichael’s in 2005 and 2006, making the Poulsbo, Washington, native just the fifth rider in history to accomplish such a feat, along with Carmichael, Bob Hannah (’77-’78), Jeff Stanton (’89-’90), and Jeremy McGrath (’93-’96, ’98’00). He is also just the eighth rider in history to ever win multiple titles in the Supercross Class.

more than five races in each of the subsequent seasons. In all, Villopoto has posted 24 wins in 63 total starts, but since that inaugural win, he has gone on to stand atop the podium 48% of the time. In just four seasons of competition in the Supercross Class, Villopoto already sits seventh on the alltime wins list.

Moreover, Villopoto’s triumphant effort was the earliest a rider has ever captured a Supercross Championship in 39 years of competition, with four races still remaining on the 2012 schedule.

Villopoto’s path to the pinnacle of the sport began in 2006, when he won one race en route to finishing third in the Western Regional Supercross Lites Championship. The following season, he captured the Western Regional crown and followed that up with a runner-up finish in the Eastern Regional Supercross Lites Championship, his final season in the division. He wrapped up his Supercross Lites career with 11 wins, currently ranking 11th on the all-time wins list.

Ryan Dungey sounded the charge now and took wins in rounds 16/Salt Lake City and 17/Las Vegas. By doing so, he finished third ex aequo on points with Justin Brayton but Ryan had 4 wins whereas Justin had none… so, third place went to Dungey.

As a brand, Kawasaki has also seen tremendous success in Supercross with 115 victories. The manufacturer’s first title came in 1976 with Jimmy Weinert and since then, seven additional championships have been won aboard a Kawasaki in each of the five decades of the sport, making it the first and only brand to reach that mark.

Reed can never be ruled out but injury put an end to his title ambitions. ///


Since taking his first win in the Supercross Class at the Seattle stop of his 2009 rookie season, Villopoto has launched an all-out assault on the Supercross record books. He went on to capture two of the final three races of the 2009 season, and has since won

In his 63 starts, Villopoto has captured podium results on 39 occasions, including 12 out of 14 races this season. He has finished inside the top five at the conclusion of 48 races.

Since he turned pro, Villopoto has competed aboard a Kawasaki, first as a member of the most successful team in history at Monster Energy/ Pro Circuit/Kawasaki while in the Supercross Lites Class, and then as the lead rider at the factory-backed Monster Energy Kawasaki effort the past four seasons. The accolades Villopoto has achieved while riding the iconic green motorcycles have made him arguably the most successful Kawasaki rider of all time. The back-to-back Supercross Class titles are the first for Kawasaki, while Villopoto’s pair of championships make him just the second Kawasaki rider after Jeff Ward (’85 & ’87) to pull that off. Villopoto also sits second on the all-time wins list for the manufacturer.

A regular Davey Millsaps saw his efforts paying off with a second place. And the winner came as no surprise… Ryan Villopoto! So, annus horribilis? It is up to you to make up your mind. For us, 2012 was a great and exciting season with fantastic racing! We are now looking forward to 2013!


by Monster Energy Kawasaki/Dirk De Neve

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/ / / G ALLE RY

INTERVIEW TODD FIM: As a promoter how do you look back on the 2012 Monster Energy AMA Supercross an FIM World Championship season? Todd Jendro: I can tell you this, when the 2012 Supercross season had finally arrived and the teams, riders and industry packed the press conference at Angel stadium in Anaheim you could literally feel the energy, excitement and tension of what was about to take place at the season opener. The question was how could you top arguably the greatest season ever in 2011? Well it was happening, the fans filled into a sold out Angel Stadium and millions of viewers tuned into the live Speed broadcast as we all saw Ryan Villopoto come out swinging and claim the victory at the season opener. People forget, but the first four rounds of the 2012 season had four different winners. If this was a preview of what was to come, we were going to see history in the making. Then lighting struck in Los Angeles at Dodger stadium when Trey Canard and Ryan Morais had a devastating crash, then again at Cowboy stadium in Arlington,TX with Chad Reed. After winning the Atlanta Supercross event a week earlier and leading up to the St. Louis Supercross, we received word that Ryan Dungey had crashed at the test track and would be sidelined for a good portion of the season if not for all of it.



The Indianapolis round proved that this crashing streak was not over when it claimed James Stewart and finally got its hands on the 2012 Monster Energy AMA Supercross an FIM World Champion Ryan Villopoto at the Seattle round. Ryan had gone down in a slow corner, tore up his knee and would miss the last two remaining rounds of the championship. The focus quickly shifted to what had gone wrong this season and why there were so many injuries. For us as the promoter of Monster Energy AMA Supercross an FIM World Championship we quickly started working internally throughout the season with the FIM, AMA, Dirt Wurx, as well as some of the team managers and top riders to determine if this was just a streak of bad luck or if there were internal flaws in the design of the racetracks. The team exhausted countless hours examining the 2012 track designs as well as comparing them to the last four years of designs in an effort to determine if there were any contributing factors that could be redesigned or eliminated. The outcome of this effort led us to believe that the 2012 track designs currently used were in fact safe. Nearly all the 2012 track diagrams shared key components that made the 2011 season one of the safest and produced some of the greatest racing in history.

While there is always room for improvement on each track design it was important to turn to our HD video which was the next step in helping the team understand why each rider crashed. Was it a rut, was that corner down to the concrete, was a rider jumping the section and quading it when it was meant to be tripled or did the rider just loose focus and make the mistake; is the level of competition now so close that riders have to take great risks to make passes and ride on the edge; is the 450cc Supercross bike technology advanced so much it allows riders to take unnecessary risks in the Supercross environment? In the end everyone has their own opinions of what were the contributing factors. Feld Motor Sports is committed and will continue to work with the FIM, AMA, Dirt Wurx, and the riders and teams to address safety issues and concerns. FIM: The FIM World Championships have rounds on different continents, can you explain why Supercross is mainly focused on the United States. T.J: Supercross has predominantly been uniquely American over its 40 year history. Feld Motor Sports recognises that Supercross has rapidly grown into an international product over the last ten years, as reflected by our international TV viewership. Supercross can be viewed in

FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2

© Simon Cudby

Roger DeCoster, Todd Jendro and Governor Jon Huntsman. ///


A little history. In December of 2002 we took Supercross international and added Geneva, Switzerland, and Arnhem, Holland as our opening rounds. In 2003 we went to Seville, Spain and Arnhem, Holland. In 2004 thru 2005 we added Toronto and Vancouver, Canada to our schedule. We currently keep Toronto on the schedule because of its proximity to the United States and because it is a successful event. As you know, the economy started to change in the United States in 2006. This economic change affected our international expansion plans and financially affected the American distributors, race teams and the industry as a whole. FIM: When can we expect international Supercross rounds in other parts of the world? T.J: I do not have that specific answer yet, but what I  can tell you is that when the economy changes and the industry strengthens itself, Monster Energy AMA Supercross an FIM World Championship will have plans to tour globally again. FIM: What exciting things can we expect to see for the 2013 Monster

Energy AMA Supercross an FIM World Championship season? T.J: There are a lot of great things developing behind the scenes and 2013 is shaping up to be a fantastic season, almost the perfect storm. Pre-ticket sales are ahead of projections which is a indication that fans are ready for Supercross. The Minneapolis round was added to our schedule for 2013, our TV package will consist of 12 events live on Speed, 9 hours on the CBS network which includes a 2013 season preview show, a specialty feature on Ryan Villopoto and a Supercross season review show on the Sunday after the Las Vegas finals. Lots of buzz and excitement with lots riders changing to new race teams. The riders are looking healthy and back in shape training right now for the Monster Energy Cup and the 2013 Supercross season. The Monster Energy AMA Supercross an FIM World Championship season has arrived!

time on the machine, making a statement to the world that KTM has arrived on the World Supercross stage. Supercross Lites Champion Justin Barcia will be riding aboard his new Muscle Milk Factory Honda as well as 2011 250mx Champion Dean Wilson who will be riding for Jeff Ward racing. Both riders are moving up to the premiere 450sx class in 2013. These two riders will definitely add to the drama in the premiere class. Don’t count out arguably the fastest rider James Stewart. James will be competing for a brand new team on the Yoshimura Suzuki. I would not count James out on this battle. Trey Canard will be returning to Supercross competition for the Muscle Milk Factory Honda. We look forward to a great 2013 Monster Energy AMA Supercross an FIM World Championship season.

by Isabelle Larivière Ryan Villopoto is back on the bike from his knee injury, so can he win the Championship three years in a row? Chad Reed is also back on his bike from his knee injury and has something to prove. Chad was in the hunt for the title when he crashed in Arlington and has the ability to achieve the goal. Ryan Dungey had an impressive season in 2012 with limited


© Simon Cudby

over 188 different countries. Our ticket sales reports also indicate that people are attending frequently from many different countries.


Todd Jendro riding with 5 Time Supercross Champion Ricky Carmichael. ///

Company: Feld Motor Sports

Work Information

Title: Vice President of Operations; Two Wheel Division

1993-1995 Worked for DGY Motor Sports. The company and race team that supported many of the top racers of the past. Jimmy Button, Doug Henry, and Steve Lamson, to name a few.

Duties: “I currently oversee the operations on all of Feld Motor Sports Two Wheel properties. Monster Energy AMA Supercross an FIM World Championship, AMA Arenacross, Nuclear Cowboyz FMX production and the Monster Energy Cup.” Todd Jendro was born on the South side of Chicago on August 7th 1970. He is married to Amy and has two daughters: Morgan (9) and Jordan (2). Started riding in 1978 First race 1982 In the late 80’s Jendro earned a Pro License and quickly realised racing at that level would require more skills than he currently had. (He laughs!) Jendro continues to ride weekly and races in select Industry races.

Over the past 17 years Jendro has worked on the Supercross property and remained with the same company that has changed hands and names throughout all of the acquisitions. 1995-2008 Was employed and acquired by several companies including SRO Motor Sports, SRO/Pace, Pace Motor Sports, SFX, Clear Channel, and Live Nation. 2008-2012 “We were purchased in the fall of 2008 by Feld Entertainment, the owners and operators of Ringling Bros, Barnum Bailey circus, Disney on Ice and Disney Live. Feld Entertainment was a perfect fit for us. They have a great portfolio of family entertainment properties that fit right in with our family Motor Sports properties which include Monster Energy AMA Supercross an FIM World Championship, AMA Arenacross, Nuclear Cowboyz FMX events, Monster Jam, and IHRA drag racing, Nitro Jam.”

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 13

The new Fireblade Celebrating twenty years of Total Control


Fim inside



For the second year the FIM has supported this campaign by Make Roads Safe Hellas and other partners, this year including helmet manufacturer AGV. Winners Ioannis Pantelakis and Konstantinos Skordylakis were met by FIM President Vito Ippolito at Mugello. What has this all been about? Despite the legal position many riders still do not wear a helmet, or if they do - do not always do up the strap! Volunteers from Make Roads

Safe Hellas have been identifying riders who, “do it right” and entering their names into a monthly free draw for helmet prizes. As last year lucky winners of the grand draw have been entertained at a MotoGP. Not surprisingly this has attracted a great deal of media coverage for this positive message. FIM has been pleased to help with MotoGP tickets for the winners. Travel and accommodation has been donated by another partner in the campaign, the London based FIA Foundation.

Loannis Pantelakis & Konstantinos Skordylakis with FIM President Vito Ippolito. ///


The next edition of this event will be hosted in Sweden. Dates for your diary are 7-9 June. The first edition was held back in 1996 in Luxembourg, with the Patronage of HM King Albert 2 King of the Belgians. The last was in 2011 in Canada. The venue for 2013 is a purpose built training track right alongside Arlanda Stockholm airport – so very easy for those who have to travel by air. Delegates who can attend using their own motorcycle will be encouraged by the prospect of some post event riding in Sweden and Norway! The hosts are Sweden’s SMC but the programme is being jointly developed with KNMV with whom SMC have strong links. ERTS is about the sort of higher level training that is increasingly popular with riders. In 2013 there will be an addition

to the programme with some emphasis also on basic level training using the syllabus developed in the Initial Rider Training programme of the EU some years ago. This was a project led by FEMA but including other partners FIM being one of them. (You can download the IRT manual along with other publications as a PDF by following the links from the home page of the FIM internet site using the link marked “Public Policy”) We have space for sixty delegates from across the world. As well as practical riding sessions featuring the training systems of KNMV and SMC there will be workshops on various topics connected to safety. Non riders are also welcome as observers since the ERTS network also appeals to academics and legislators. – Anyone with responsibilities for road safety matters.

In addition to track sessions there will also be riding out on the local roads as part of the introduction to the different training systems these two organisations offer. The Arlanda facility is a pure road safety training track, not a racing one. The field section has parts that replicate conditions out on the road as well. Every year thousands of Swedish riders attend “SMC School” there. The FIM ERTS 2013 is an opportunity for riders from across the world to see what makes this such a special place. For more information check out the links on pre registration information from the FIM Home page.

by John Chatterton-Ross

© Ulf Eriksson

Stockholm Arlanda training track. ///

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FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2

© Nuno Larenjeira




© Nuno Larenjeira

Challenged by many, vanquished by none! Antonio Cairoli took home a sixth FIM World Championship! ///


Once again, Suzuki’s Clément Desalle was one of his fiercest opponents. But, after two solid seconds in Valkenswaard, he lost a little speed. He never gave up though, fighting his way back to second and making the most out of Toni’s problem at a certain Swedish GP, where he took the points lead. Not for long, though, because an injury put an end to his aspirations. Desalle finished on the podium once again but it was not on top!

his maiden appearance – confirmed that he will be a rider to watch in the future. He put in some nice results, narrowly beating his countryman Christophe Pourcel for third. There was satisfaction to see Christophe Pourcel do so well after some years of competing in the US. And there were happy faces at the results of Ken De Dycker (5th), who switched to KTM one week before the season started, Kevin Strijbos (6th), Xavier Boog who is finding his way in the MX1

class, Shaun Simpson (11th) and Sébastien Pourcel (12th), who came back on the “road of recovery” after two years of injuries. And there was disappointment at the injuries that struck Evgeny Bobryhev (9th), David Philippaerts (15th) and Max Nagl (16th), and the results of factory riders Tanel Leok (8th), Rui Gonçalves (10th) and LS Honda rider Jonathan Barragan (14th). But the class is so hotly contested and has so many good riders…

Hard charger Clément Desalle had to acknowledge the superiority of number 222. /// © Nuno Larenjeira

Antonio Cairoli was once again the man to beat… And once again, he withstood all attempts to end his reign. Analysing this year’s results, one cannot but be full of admiration for the Sicilian. True, he lost some battles to Gautier Paulin (Bulgaria), to Christophe Pourcel (Italy and Brazil) and to Clément Desalle (Portugal and Sweden); his armour even started to crack in Sweden where he had two DNFs and Desalle took the red plate of Championship leader… But in the end, nobody could beat Cairoli for the Championship. Toni is the smartest man out there with an incredible “grinta”. He is surrounded by a good team that makes him “feel good”, and the KTM factory is behind him all the way.

Third place went to Gautier Paulin. The rookie – who had already won the final MX1GP of the 2011 season in what was

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 17





Herlings was the dominator, putting in a series of first and seconds for most of the season and counting one DNF only. Jeffrey’s problem is his temper and somewhat heated reactions, which got him into trouble sometimes. Nevertheless, he is a world class rider and a real “sandmaster”, lapping all but Van Horebeek in the first race in Lierop. He must have inherited this from his father Peter Herlings who was a skilled sand rider also, capable of beating the best in those conditions. And you cannot but have respect for Herlings’ results, knowing that he got involved in a nasty road accident on the way home in Russia and still pulled in six wins in the eight following races. But British bulldog Tommy Searle put up a tenacious fight and was never far off the pace, although he was clearly dominated by Herlings, he left his opponent no room

for error. Unfortunately, he had three DNF’s which gave the young Dutch rider the breather he needed. Tommy will make the move to the MX1 class next year. Van Horebeek took a solid third; the two top men proved too fast. Actually, and in agreement with KTM, Jeremy did not race the last event in Teutschenthal, so he could fully prepare for the FIM Motocross of Nations. Still, 2012 was confirmation of his talent that he will be displaying in the MX1 class in the future (just like Roelants). Does that mean that Herlings will have a clear road to a second title win again next year? Tonus will be back and there are many talented up and coming riders in the class. A look in the top ten reveal the names of Jake Nicholls, Jordi Tixier, Max Anstie, José Butron, Glenn Coldenhoff and Dylan Ferrandis.

Tommy Searle never gave up but three DNFs were too much... ///

FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2

© Nuno Larenjeira

Dutch rider Jeffrey Herlings took home a second FIM World Championship! His first one was conquered in the FIM Junior 85cc ranks in 2008. This time, he struck “big” in the MX2 class. Actually, with the 2011 Champ Ken Roczen over in the USA to race the Supercross and the Outdoors for KTM, the number two and three had the playground for themselves. Not that there were no other riders capable of winning, but injuries kept Yamaha-mounted Arnaud Tonus and Zack Osborne out of competition, each one sitting out six and eight events respectively. And then there were their team mates, Belgian Jeremy Van Horebeek (KTM) and Joël Roelants (Kawasaki). They looked like sure bets for numbers three and four of the Championship, and Roelants even won the event in Latvia, but he went down in Great Britain and was run into by another rider, which ended his season.


That is not how you write "EVIL", Jeffrey! Herlings is not only the "enfant terrible" in his class but he is also the MX2 Terminator! ///

Š Nuno Larenjeira


F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 19



MX3 – AUSTRIA ON TOP ALL THE WAY! Matthias Walkner

joins Heinz Kinigadner as the second Motocross World Champion from Austria. And he did it on board an Austrian motorcycle, just like the tall baker from Uderns/Tyrol in the 250cc class in 1984 and 1985. Walkner switched from the MX1 class to the MX3 and did not know what to expect. However, he was sure that a good result was possible when everything went well. And it did! Dominated by Belgians Kevin Wouts and Yentel Martens in the deep sand of Valkenswaard, he took the red plate of the points leader on the evening of the second event in France and never looked back. Steady results kept him in the lead but his opponents Martin Michek (CZE), Günter Schmidinger (AUS) and Klemen Gercar (SLO) never gave up and kept well within striking distance. Walkner did not break and took FIM gold as of the first race of the final event in Teutschenthal. Last year’s third, Martin Michek, took runner-up position and it is clear that his “zero” score in Valkenswaard did not do him any good when all the points were

Austria snapped up FIM gold and bronze in the MX3 class. Günter Schmidinger took third; not exactly what he had hoped for, but he admitted that he had made some mistakes during the season. Slovenian Klemen Gercar managed overall victory on home soil in Orehova Vas and took one event win, but together with Mateuz Irt (6th) and young Tim Gasjer, he is part of a generation of Slovenian riders who can certainly leave their mark A final word for Finland’s Antti Pyrhonen. In what was his last year of racing, the veteran of the class still finished a strong fifth in the Championship. Antti was dominated by his younger rivals but he remained a force to be reckoned with; experience versus speed. Next year he will use his experience as Ice One Team manager in the MX1 class.

Matthias Walkner struck gold in the MX3 class. ///

FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2

© Nuno Larenjeira


counted. Still, Martin won three overalls this year (Bulgaria, Slovakia and Great Britain) and thus proved himself to be a MX3 regular who is steadily improving. Maybe next year?

Š Nuno Larenjeira


Another one bites the dust... Could runner-up Micheck be heir to the throne in 2013? /// MXGP is exciting. No wonder it attracts huge crowds. ///

Š Nuno Larenjeira


F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 21

/ / / G ALLE RY

© Nuno Larenjeira


© Nuno Larenjeira

in the street and you will say that she looks like any other girl of her age. She is nice looking with a twinkle in her eye, spontaneous and fun to hang around with. Meet her on a motocross track, and you will start to think that she might be somewhat “different”; fast and furious that is… No wonder, as she is the 2012 FIM Women’s Motocross World Champion. Forza Fonta!


Born in Parma/Italy in 1994, little Chiara received her first motorcycle at the tender age of three and a half for when she got “a little bit older”. And what happens when you give a toy to a kid but then say that it is not to be touched? Big tears. But the day she got on it, she was ready. Why give a little girl a motorcycle, you might think. It was not to fulfil daddy’s unfulfilled dreams of being a champion, but rather to keep

her quiet. After all, elder brother Lucas was racing motocross. And you know how kids are… But little Chiara also did “girls’ things”… She trained as an artistic gymnast on the balance beam and was quite good at it, but in end the motorcycle got the upper hand. She started competing in the Italian “Trofeo Lemm”, which she won. This got the ball rolling and as of 2002, she took on the Italian Regional and National Championships, never finishing outside the top four. She went to the USA to participate in the famous “Loretta Lynn’s” in 2007, and won her class. The little girl had made her mark and somebody had noticed.

It is no

surprise, then, that a certain Michele Rinaldi contacted her parents one day to ask whether she would like to ride the 2009 FIM Women’s Motocross World

Racing with the Fontanesis is a family business. The "clan" celebrating Chiara's 2012 FIM World Crown. /// FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2


She started the season of her first year well, consistently scoring top ten positions. That was until the final event in Lierop, where she finished second overall behind reigning Champ Steffi Laier from Germany. Both riders claimed a first and a second place but Laier’s victory in race two put her on top. Still, the performance of the Italian youngster turned some heads. Lierop is heck of a sand track and the Italian was on a 125cc 2-stroke whereas the German was aboard a more powerful 250cc 4-stroke! Chiara ended the championship in 9th spot. Not bad for a rookie! The next year (2010) saw Chiara win two races but she took four podiums, coming second overall in Bulgaria, France, Germany and Italy. Unfortunately, she did not fare that well in the other three events. Still, these results got her a fourth place in the Championship. The points gap with Laier was still 51 points, but The Italian was closing in and proving the she was a force to be reckoned with. And indeed, Chiara proved more than a handful for Laier in 2011, missing the FIM World Crown by a mere 9 points! She never finished lower than third in any race she took part in. But Laier did even better by claiming first or seconds throughout the whole season. However, the inter-season did not go as well as planned. Training for the Geneva Supercross, she hurt her hand. It was not too bothersome and she was able to race the event, finishing second behind Livia Lancelot. However, when she picked up training in January she fell again and sprained her wrist ligaments, in what she herself called “a stupid crash”.

She recovered

well and started off the 2012 season with two impressive wins over reigning Champion Laier and former Champion Lancelot in the opening round in Valkenswaard, one of her favourite circuits. In fact, Lancelot was the only rider who could potentially match the Italian’s speed, but she was not racing the entire Championship, concentrating mainly on the X-Games instead, so she was no threat for the title. And neither was Laier, who focused on the German Championship. A determined Fontanesi won her first and well earned FIM

Women’s Motocross World Championship in Matterley Basin, dominating the others well into the season. But the week before Teutschenthal, she went down in an Italian race and suffered concussion. So she was a “no show” in Germany, which allowed her rivals to make up some ground in the points standings. And the winner in Germany (no surprise) was Livia Lancelot. The French rider only participated in half of the series but still won five races out of the eight at which she took the start. Nathalie Kane also took one race victory away from Fonta, but that was in the deep mud of Orehova Vas, where she went down and had to fight her way back through the ranks. Would the outcome of the Championship have been different if Lancelot had taken part in all the rounds? Who knows, but “ifs” don’t change anything. Chiara Fontanesi is the 2012 FIM Women’s Motocross World Champion. If some chose not to be there, then so be it. It does not take anything away from her achievements. Does it mean that she had an easy ride? No. The Yamaha rider is the first to admit that Kane, Van der Wekken, Borchers, Charroux, Nocera and Miller have stepped up the pace. And just as she did before them, these girls are climbing up the ladder! And what about racing out of the MX1/ MX2 limelight, but with the MX3 class? Actually, Chiara - who has been racing for two years with the MXGP and two

years with the MX3 - enjoys it more. She feels that the Women’s race is no longer a “support programme” but rather that the “girls” now have a “league of their own” and get more attention from fans and media. Also, she finds the MX3 paddock “more relaxed”. And as the cherry on the cake, Fontanesi went to race the final round of the AMA Women’s Nationals in Lake Elsinore. She impressed the American crowd by winning both races in style. She may not have been jumping the big jumps like her opponents but in each race, she overtook the early leader (and reigning American WMX champion) Ashley Fiolek and then pulled away. Does that mean that she will be trading the FIM Championship for the AMA Series? Not so in 2013, when she intends to defend her world crown, but she might hop over to the USA for selected rounds of the AMA WMX Nationals and the X-Games.

So much the better for us! Chiara, we want you here! by Dirk De Neve © Nuno Larenjeira

Championship for Yamaha. The answer was a resounding “yes” and she has been with them ever since.


Profile Chiara Fontanesi Born in Parma (Italy) on 10 March 1994 Nationality: Italian Residence: Parma Nikname: Kiki, Fonta Height: 1,67m Weight: 64 kg Education: Scientific high school, sports pathway Hobby: Snowboard Other sports practised: artistic gymnastics and pole vault First motorcycle experience: At the age of two on a Yamaha PW50 First race: “Trofeo Lemm” in 2000 Favourite riders: Tommy Searle, Gautier Paulin Favourite tracks: Valkenswaard (NL), Orehova Vas (SLO) Team: 8fontaMXracing

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 23

standings © Nuno Larenjeira


The FIM Junior Motocross World Championship is also a challenge for national teams. These youngsters are proud to represent their country. ///

FIM JUNIOR MOTOCROSS 65cc – THUNDER FROM DOWN UNDER! Australian Caleb Grothues was clearly the dominant figure of the 65cc class after winning both heats with superb authority. Grothues won the first race with almost twelve seconds’ advantage over second qualified Raivo Dankers, and in the second race the Australian was also able to open a comfortable gap with his pursuers and cross the finish line seven seconds ahead of Slovenian Luka Milec, who finished seventh overall, as he was only fourteenth in the first race.

American Conner Mullennix was fourth and Russian Timur Petrashin made up the top five. Xylian Ramella, current 65cc European Champion, did not get really good starts. Besides, in the first race he

crashed in the last lap when he was fighting for second place and he only managed to finish fifth. In the second moto, Ramella only managed eleventh place, which gave him the tenth position overall.

Caleb Grotheus (7) took the 65cc crown in dominant style. ///

The big surprise of the day in the 65cc class was the young Romanian Robert Tompa, who completed the top three thanks to his consistent 4-5 results.


FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2

© Nuno Larenjeira

The second overall place was for another Australian, Riley Dukes, who succeeded in finishing steady thirds in both heats.



85cc – CLASSICAL MUSIC MEETS THE SWEET SOUND OF A MOTOCROSS 2-STROKE the Championship) as he approached the finish jump. Current 85cc European Champion Davy Pootjes admitted that he struggled with the demanding Sevlievo track, but his 2-5

© Nuno Larenjeira

Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe’s Brian Hsu was hailed as the 2012 FIM 85cc World Champion after finishing 3-1. The Taiwanese rider with a German passport – who plays the violin - admitted that he was not expecting such a result, especially as

Forkner was winning the race, Pootjes crossed the finish line second. The Dutch rider did his best in the second race, but he could do no better than fifth. Home rider Ivan Petrov made the crowd go wild, especially in the second race when he was fighting with Forkner for the runner-up position. In the end, Petrov crossed the finish line second in front of the American, but his ninth position in the first race relegated him to fourth overall. Italian Tomas Ragadini completed the top five of the 85cc class, taking sixth in the first race, but in the second he had a really good start and at one point he was fighting for second position. Finally, Ragadini crossed the finish line in a solid fourth place, which gave him the fifth position overall.

Sport can be cruel; Austin Forkner lost the Championship in the last lap. ///

The second overall position was for Team Green Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Austin Forkner, who finished tight in points with Hsu and lost the Championship in the last metres of the second race. After winning the first heat, Forkner did not have a really good start in the second race, but lap after lap he was fighting his way through the pack. In the final stage of the race, the American took second position from Bulgarian rider Ivan Petrov. Forkner was still second in the last lap - still taking gold - but his motorcycle was giving up and the American lost one position (and

result gave him the third overall position. The Dutch rider starred in a dogfight for second place with American Forkner in the first race, but once the American overtook him, Pootjes decided to ride safe, and while

Bradley Cox from South Africa finished seventh, and Italian Filippo Zonta and Australian Mitchel Evans were eighth and ninth respectively.

© Nuno Larenjeira

he was sick and felt really weak before the races started. But Hsu gave his absolute best to finish third in the first race and in the second one he was the first to reach the first corner, and from then on he dominated the competition.

2010 FIM 65cc Junior World Champion Jake Pinhancos took the holeshot and immediately opened a comfortable gap. Unfortunately, the American had some mechanical problems and he dropped back somewhat. He crossed the finish line in the fourth position. Pinhancos’ start in the second race was not too good and he had to fight his way back to seventh, which gave him overall sixth.

Unexpected but not undeserved! A sick Brian Hsu (81) persevered and won the 85cc class. /// F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 25



125 cc – GASJER PUTS SLOVENIA IN THE MOTOCROSS BOOKS KTM Silver Action’s Tim Gajser dominated the event. Simone Furlotti grabbed the holeshot but Gasjer took the lead as of the second lap and ran away to the chequered flag. The second heat was not that easy for Gajser. He had to fight his way to top position while struggling with his rear brake. But in the end, it did not matter. Two victories and a maximum number of points crowned him FIM Junior 125cc Motocross World Champion, a “first” for Slovenia. Team Castellari’s Simone Furlotti rode really well and thanks to his solid 2-2 result the Italian conquered the FIM silver medal. Furlotti started at the front in both heats, but whereas in the first he had to surrender to Gasjer fairly quickly, the second time the Italian was able hold the lead until the very last laps of the final race. KSM Racing Team’s Pauls Jonass, who was the FIM 85cc Junior World Champion last year, made his mark by finishing on the third step of the podium in his first year in

Pole position setter, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe’s Jorge Zaragoza, who obtained the pole on the first day, missed the podium for just three points on the second. At the start of race 1, the Spanish rider was blocked in the first corner, and he had to fight his way up from twelfth position to sixth. Zaragoza was exhausted after that race, but he gave it his all to take fourth in the final race of the day and managed fourth overall. HM Plant KTM UK’s James Dunn had a difficult first race and could only manage tenth. Things went much better for the British rider in the second race and thanks to his third position Dunn finished fifth overall in the championship.

Vaclav Kovar from the Czech Republic put in two really good starts but he crashed in both races while riding with the top five riders. In the end Kovar finished sixth overall thanks to his 7-6 result. Calvin Vlaanderen from the Netherlands, South African Nicholas Adams, Dane Tomas Olsen and Hamish Harwood from New Zealand completed the top ten. American riders Jarec Balkovic and Jordon Smith were struck by bad luck in the first race as both got a DNF. Smith veered to the left of the track and got green fence stuck in his rear wheel, and Balkovic had a mechanical problem. Smith then scored a twelfth whereas Balkovic took sixteenth, which translated into eighteenth for Smith and twentieth for Balkovic in the overall standings, not reflecting their potential at all.

by Youthstream Media/ Dirk De Neve

Hot prospect for the future; a stylish Tim Gasjer flies over the track of Sevlievo on his way to victory in the 125cc class! ///

FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2

© Nuno Larenjeira


the 125cc class. At one point of the first heat, the Latvian was really close to taking second position, but in the end he had to settle for third. A mid-pack start in the second race resulted in a fifth and put him third overall.


Design: - Photo: David, FIM_G2F Media, M. Zanzani_Youthstream 2011





© Nuno Larenjeira



by Nuno Larenjeira

Brian Hsu

2012 FIM 85cc Junior Motocross World Champion “After the World vice-champion title in 2010 with the 65cc, I moved to the 85cc class the following year, but I  only rode in the Italian National and Regional Championships. It was more like a learning year for me on the new bike, so I finished mid-pack in the National.” “In 2011 I  didn’t participate in many races in the European Championship although I finished 10th in the FIM Junior MX World Championship in Cingoli.”

Jake Pinhancos 2012 85cc: 6th 2010 FIM 65cc Junior Motocross World Champion

© Nuno Larenjeira

“I’m pretty pumped for winning this year, I wasn’t at my best as I  was still dealing with a cold I caught in the UK the weekend before, I  almost fainted at the end…”

“Since my 65cc FIM World title in 2010, I’ve been dreaming of coming back overseas and trying to win another title, this time in the 85cc class. My adaptation to the bigger bike wasn’t difficult and I was able to run in the top five after a couple of months.” “This year in Sevlievo I had some bike problems unfortunately and finished sixth overall, but I  led one of the races and got some good speed. I  would like to try again, hopefully within two years in the 125cc class.”

FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2


© Nuno Larenjeira


Enzo Lopes

2012 85cc:15th 2011 FIM 65cc Junior Motocross Vice World Champion “Last year I was Brazilian champion and World vice-champion in the 65cc class but I  was already riding the 85cc; I  finished 3rd in the National series in Brazil.” “This year I’m only riding the 85cc and although I’m fighting for the title in Brazil, in the FIM World Championship things are harder as most of the other riders are older than me. Still, I gave my very best in Sevlievo.”

© Nuno Larenjeira

“This year I’m also participating in the Brazilian Arenacross series and in the 85cc class in the US where I ride against Austin Forkner and Jake Pinhancos - it’s very competitive out there. Next year I’ll still be riding in the 85cc class.”

Henri Jacobi

2012 125cc:12th 2010 FIM 85cc Junior Motocross Vice World Champion “Winning the 85cc title in 2010 was great, I remember how much we all celebrated! The following year I moved to the 125cc and it wasn’t so good though, as I broke my feet on a severe practising crash; after four races in the season I  was out… I  couldn’t come back till the very last race of the season in September.”

Pauls Jonass

2012 125cc: 3rd 2011 FIM 85cc Junior Motocross World Champion

© Nuno Larenjeira

“This year things are going better and it’s my ‘coming-back’ year so I feel that sometimes I’m not strong enough on the bike when I get to big tracks like Sevlievo or Fermo. So this winter I’ll be practising a lot to improve there. I want to try and win some races next year!”

“This year my adaptation to the bigger bike wasn’t that difficult as I was already riding a 125cc last year. I’m competing in the European and German Championships and it’s only my first year, so I’m still learning.” “My European Championship season this year has had its ups and downs; I made a lot of mistakes and had some crashes but I  also got on to the podium twice. In the German series I  ride with the bigger 250cc bikes so it’s really hard, but there are some tracks where I can be fast with my two-stroke.”

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 29

“My bike helps me save lives every day.” Bubacarr Jallow, a health worker in the Gambia

But every day in Africa children still die...


...because they don’t get the health care they need.

To find out how to help get more health workers on the road and save lives visit Riders for health, The drummonds, spring hill, Pitsford, Northampton, NN6 9AA, United Kingdom

T: +44 (0)1604 889 580

F: +44 (0)1604 889 595


UK RegisTeRed ChARiTy No. 1054565




© Youthstream


Thomas Chareyre, younger brother of reigning FIM SuperMoto S1 World Champion Adrien Chareyre, narrowly missed the 2011 crown after a racing incident with his brother in the last event. This year, there would be no hesitation. Still, the 2012 season quickly became a fight between the French brothers and Finn Mauno Hermunen. Actually, they would share all the race victories between them, leaving the scraps for all the other competitors. Thomas Chareyre started off his title campaign well by winning the opening round in Ottobiano. He took another victory in Rijeka, and never finished off

the podium in all the other events. Six race victories and consistent top results saw him finish at the top of the points table and add a second FIM S1 World Championship to his name. Defending Champion Adrien Chareyre also won two events, Sicily and France, and as many races, but over the Championship as a whole he was not as strong as his brother and Hermunen. He finished the third in this year’s title fight. But the World Crown still stays in the family! As for Hermunen, he has always been a title contender. The man from the north also won two events (Bulgaria and

Switzerland) an even added ten race wins to his account this year. Unfortunately, a disqualification for outside assistance and mechanical problems while leading the third race in Sicily cost him dearly. Although he managed to restart and finish 16th, way behind Thomas Chareyre who took the win, he saw the points gap increase by 20 valuable points. Eventually, Mauno would finish the Championship on Thomas Chareyre’s (w)heels, taking silver. Behind these three riders, the field included the likes of Ivan Lazzarini, Christian Ravaglia and Matt Winstanley; all SuperMoto GP regulars but no title contenders this year.

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 31





Darryl King was always a fierce rider when he was battling it out in the 500cc class in the nineties. No wonder that the “motocross bug” struck when the FIM created the Veteran class. Darryl has always been around, doing one or even several events and showing that he still had the speed. This year however, the FIM Veteran Motocross World Cup was back to its original formula: one single event. It was a nice break for the veteran riders because they did not have to train for a complete season, just like in the “old days”. They could now concentrate on one event, the Motocross Grand Prix Festival in Matterley Basin. And the winner was the very likeable Kiwi, who swept both races and beat Swedish rider Mats Nilsson, winner of the 2009 and 2010 editions.


© Nuno Larenjeira

© Nuno Larenjeira

Third place went to Spain’s Genis Colomer who was tied in points with the Swede. However, Matts’ better score in the second race put him in front…

FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2

© Roger Lohrer




At the end of the first event in France, reigning Champion Daniel Willemsen had no points on his account. The reason was simple: passenger Haralds Kurpnieks injured his arms during the first race and was out of the competition. Willemsen quickly had to find another passenger and teamed up with countryman Kenny van Gaalen the following week in Holland. As of then, Willemsen started an incredible campaign. In the next five events/10 races he scored five wins, three seconds, one third and one fifth. By that time, he had worked his way up to second in the points standings and was tailing his fiercest opponent Etienne Bax by a mere 17 points. That is when a knee injury took van Gaalen out of the sidecar… It may be a coincidence but it was again during a round France… But at least he earned 45 points that day. Enter Latvian Lauris Daiders as passenger for the remaining five events/10 races. And

the Willemsen machine was not slowing down; on the contrary! In the remaining five events/10 races he took six victories, two seconds, one fourth and one eighth. It has to be said that the last two results were because Willemsen played it safe at the final in Germany. In what was one of the closest championship battles of the past few years, Daniel Willemsen took a tenth FIM World Championship and so equals Stefan Everts’ record in the solo classes. The 2012 FIM Passenger World Championship title went to Kenny van Gaalen. Both, Daiders and van Gaalen raced five events. However, our of the 452 points earned by Willemsen, van Gaalen scored 227 points, whereas Daiders took only “225” points… The duo Etienne Bax/Kaspars Stupelis (NED/LAT) finished second in the Championship, only 5 points behind Willemsen. The Dutch driver also had two

“zero” scores, just like Willemsen, which puts him at the same performance level this year as the ten times World Champion! Behind the two Dutchmen, the steady Belgian pair of Ben Adriaenssen/Sven Verbrugge (2011 FIM Passenger World Champion) finished in the third place. Positions four, five and six respectively went to Joris Hendrickx/Kaspars Liepins (BEL/LAT), Jan Hendricks/Tim Smeuninx (BEL/BEL) and the promising French pair Valentin Giraud/Nicolas Musset (FRA/FRA). All good sidecar teams, but no match for the two in front; at least not this year.

Will they be able to beat Willemsen in 2013? Hard to say… The Dutchmen will be out to take an eleventh Championship and thus become Motocross’s Number One. And he has got a serious card to play… by Dirk De Neve

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 33




FIM Motocross of Nations was run in Lommel (Belgium), the very spot where the United States started their “Nations dominance” in 1981 with the “all Honda Team” of Danny Laporte, Johnny O’Mara, Donnie Hansen and Chuck Sun and stunned the crowd by beating the favourite home team of Eric Geboers, Georges Jobé, Harry Everts and André Vromans. So Lommel has a significant place in motocross history. But there is more to it than just that. The gruelling track has a horror reputation amongst the riders. It wears out men and machines; it separates the men from the boys. It is a “killer track”! No wonder, then, that everybody was looking out for this year’s confrontation between Team USA and the rest of the world. Team Manager Roger De Coster lined up Ryan Dungey, Blake Baggett and Justin Barcia; their mission: to keep the Chamberlain Trophy in American hands. And they were serious about it because they arrived on the spot 10 days ahead of the event to train and get a taste of the Lommel sand.


But the “rest of the world” had other plans. The teams of Belgium (Clément Desalle, Jeremy Van Horebeek, Ken De Dycker), France (Gauthier Paulin, Marvin Musquin, Xavier Boog), Germany (Maximilian Nagl, Ken Roczen, Marcus Schiffer), the Netherlands (Marc de Reuver, Glen Coldenhoff, Jeffrey Herlings), Italy (Antonio Cairoli, Alessandro Lupino, Davide Guarneri) and Great Britain (Tommy Searle, Jake Nicholls, Max Anstie) would take no prisoners. Their riders were all Lommel regulars. If the “Yanks” were to be beaten, then this definitely was the track to do it!


And the Saturday qualifying already gave a clear indication. Three riders, one race each, the two best out of three results would count. And the qualifying results surprisingly put Germany in front of Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands, France, Great Britain, the USA and everyone else.


A total of nineteen teams qualified; thirteen went to Sunday’s B-Final which was won by New-Zealand. So, the Kiwis were in for the final shootout. Then came Sunday… Three riders, two races each, the five best out of six results would count. And guess what?

The German Team continued its march to victory, placing their two riders Nagl and Roczen in the top five. Belgium put two riders in the top ten; the other contenders in the top ten had their second rider between places 10 and 20 or beyond… The sand of Lommel had taken its first toll. So, with two results in the bag, it was Germany leading Belgium, France, USA, Russia, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Ireland, Estonia and Italy.

And the German team continued to dominate, placing their two riders Roczen and Schiffer in the top ten. No other country could do as much. All the other teams in the top ten had their second rider placed between 10 and 20, or beyond… Some of the contenders such as the Belgian and Dutch teams lost one rider because of mechanical breakdowns… The sand of Lommel was not especially friendly to the local riders… So, with four results scored, it was Germany leading USA, France, Estonia, Belgium, the Netherlands, Russia, Italy, Great Britain and Australia.

FIM M AGA ZINE . 8 3 /// S U MME R 2 0 1 2

© Nuno Larenjeira




the Netherlands, Italy, France, Estonia, Great Britain, Portugal and Australia. On the individual front, 2012 FIM MX1 and MX2 World Champions Cairoli and Herlings proved that their titles were no fluke, as each won one race. They were to duel in Race 3 but Herlings, who went down in the start, quickly came back to second. But the time in between Races 2 and 3 was very short and the chase through the pack cost him so much strength that he paid for all his efforts, whereas Cairoli, riding in Races 1 and 3, had some more time in between the races, and was not involved in any crashes. Still, it was a pleasure to see the Italian, who has been plagued so much by bad luck in this event in the previous years, come out on top of the pack. As for the Germans, Nagl and Roczen did what was expected of them, getting two solid results. Schiffer surprised everybody and did what he had to do: he clinched that so important fifth result. But most of all, they made no mistakes and dominated the 66th edition of the FIM Motocross of Nations, claiming Germany’s first ever victory in this event.

RACE 3 And the German team finished the job, Nagl again claiming a place in the top ten. Belgium and the USA put two

riders in the top ten but it was too little, too late… With five results counted, it was Germany who won the 2012 FIM Motocross of Nations. Belgium took second place, the USA third. Then came

Next year: Teutschenthal, Germany… book now, go later… It is bound to be packed!

by Dirk De Neve

© Youthstream -Zanzani

Deutschland über alles! It was Germany's black, red, yellow that took the upper hand over Belgium's black, red, yellow and the USA's blue, red and white in the presence of HRH Prince Philippe of Belgium and Duke of Brabant. ///

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 35

/ / / Fim inside


“It’s a pleasure to join the FIM in this initiative. I really appreciate the fact that you took me to be an Ambassador. I like the idea that we can avoid the pollution and try to live a better life. It should be our common goal. Obviously, people will be watching me now. Since I joined the project, I have already started changing my habits by sorting waste, by not throwing waste on the ground or leaving the door of the fridge open for a long time… And to be honest, it is not complicated at all. You just need the will to do it!” - Marc Marquez, 2010 FIM 125cc Grand Prix World Champion 36

© Good-Shoot


Recently, as part of the celebration of World Environment Day (WED), the FIM launched the Environmental Ambassadors project. The idea for the project had been in the pipeline for a number of years and became a reality the day Marc Marquez, Laia Sanz, Takahisha Fujinami, Randy De Puniet and Ken Roczen agreed to take part. All of them gave us an enthusiastic “yes” with all the force of their charisma, their sporting spirit and their sense of social responsibility.

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Fim inside


At present the FIM is designing an action plan adapted to each of the members of this programme, including environmental messages to spectators, school visits, messages for social networking, and special publications, support for international organisations like UNDP for celebration of World Environment Day, forums, interviews, etc. The impact of each message conveyed by our Ambassadors is enormous. For World Environment Day, for example, the messages posted by Marc Márquez on his official Facebook page generated over 900 “likes” and lots of positive comments. This is the type of impact we want to create in order to inspire people and make them aware of environmental issues. The Ambassadors will be at the service of humanity and future generations and will have to be leaders and play a major role in the contribution made by our sport to a greener and more sustainable world. The Ambassadors Programme is one of the most important aspects of the agreements between UNEP & the FIM and a priority objective of the Action Plan of the CIE. This will be a different type of race, but at the finish, it is Planet Earth that will be the winner.


“I consider it an honour that the FIM asked me to be a Ride Green Ambassador. I think it is very important for motor sports to have a good image and take care of the environment. It is a big responsibility. I always try to give a good image of myself and be respectful towards other people and things. I always try to respect the environment in simple ways, like trying not to waste any water, turning off the lights whenever I can or when I am practising, never throwing away the empty bottles in the landscape. I even try to collect those left behind other people.” - Laia Sanz, 12 times FIM Women’s Individual Trial World & World Champion

© G2F Media


The FIM Environmental Ambassadors are men and women representing different motorcycling disciplines and different cultures and nationalities; sportsmen and –women with high standards who have lent their voices to spread the FIM’s environmental policy and, most importantly, will spread inspiration and awareness among their fans, the motorcycling community and the sporting community at large.

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 37

/ / / Fim inside

KEN ROCZEN MOTOCROSS STAR, JOINS THE AMBASSADORS GRID Germany’s Ken Roczen, KTM 2011 FIM MX2 Motocross World Champion and currently riding for Red Bull KTM in AMA Supercross and Motocross Lites, with multiple titles to his name including 2003 “Rookie of the Year” ADAC MX Junior Cup, and 2007 FIM 85cc Junior Motocross World Champion, joined the grid of our selected environmental ambassadors this September.


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© Nuno Laranjeira

Roczen has over 63,000,000 fans on his Facebook page. Like the other four ambassadors, he is lending his voice to raise awareness about how important it is that everyone participates in environmental conservation.











© Good Shoot



FOR THE FIM ICE SPEEDWAY GLADIATORS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP THE 2012 FIM ICE SPEEDWAY GLADIATORS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP HAS BEEN THE OPPORTUNITY FOR TAG HEUER TIMING TO UNVEIL ITS NEW STRICTLY ACCURATE AND RELIABLE TIMING PROGRAMME DESIGNED FOR A CHAMPIONSHIP IN WHICH TIMING IS PLAYING A NEW AND IMPORTANT ROLE FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER. For the first time ever, the FIM Ice Speedway Gladiators World Championship has benefited from having a professional timing service to bring it into line with the standards used throughout other motorcycling disciplines where speed and precision are the key factors.

HOW DOES IT WORK? This sport is unique in so many ways in comparison with other two-wheel disciplines and therefore demanded a new approach in order to deliver a reliable and accurate timing system and service. TAG Heuer has designed a dedicated set of timekeeping equipment, with the support and the expertise of the well-known servicing company Jagro (PL). Testing programmes have been run in Poland with the efficient support of the ‘Polski Zwiazek Motorowy’ (Polish Motorcycle Federation).


Jacek Gronek, Jagro’s CEO, explains “The TAG Heuer timing system for Ice Speedway combines transponder and photo-finish solutions. The first element of the system’s setup is a loop placed in the ice on the track along the start line, connected to a decoder. Riders passing the line can be immediately identified thanks to transponders fixed on their motorcycles. The application managing the whole timing process holds a list of riders along with their transponder numbers, and processes the data received from all the devices. The transponders are used for intermediate timing while the final heat time is taken from the photo finish image. This solution provides great precision and is the most reliable in close finish situations. In addition to helping identifying the winner, the software can generate various reports or send the results to the venue’s display. Additionally, the timing data is

sent to the FIM website where fans unable to participate in the event can follow the competition’s progress live. Another part of the system is a Start clock placed on the infield close to the start gates. It is used by the referee to inform the riders of the remainder of the 2 minutes time allowance. The countdown is triggered wirelessly from the referee tower.

A GREAT SUPPORT FOR REFEREES The riders, teams, local organisers and FIM officials have applauded the system and noted the extra and enhanced quality that the introduction of this new service by TAG Heuer has brought to the series. “I would say that the timing and photo finish system that TAG Heuer have given us is a great help to Referees. The result

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© Good Shoot



“I would say that the timing and photo finish system that TAG Heuer have given us is a great help to Referees. The result in a close finish is easily seen and there is a picture to confirm the finish order." - Krister Gardell, FIM Ice Speedway Gladiators World Championship referee.




3 White


Nikolay Krasnikov PASS 1: LAP 1:


1 Red

4 Yellow

Eduard Krysov PASS 1: LAP 1:


2 Blue

16.736 16.736

17.162 17.162

Dmitry Koltakov PASS 1: LAP 1:

17.704 17.704








> PASS 2: 31.134 > LAP 2: 14.485

Dmitry Khomitsevich PASS 1: LAP 1:


16.649 16.649




> PASS 2: 31.307 > LAP 2: 14.571



> PASS 2: 32.320 > LAP 2: 15.158



> PASS 2: 33.148 > LAP 2: 15.444

> PASS 3: 45.781 > LAP 3: 14.647

61.477 > PASS 3: 46.323 > LAP 3: 15.016

63.605 > PASS 3: 47.807 > LAP 3: 15.487

63.832 > PASS 3: 48.530 > LAP 3: 15.382


> PASS 4: 60.694 > LAP 4: 14.913


+ 0.783

> PASS 4: 61.477 > LAP 4: 15.154


+ 2.911

> PASS 4: 63.605 > LAP 4: 15.798


+ 3.138

> PASS 4: 63.832 > LAP 4: 15.302

in a close finish is easily seen and there is a picture to confirm the finish order. Riders are also confident and do not question decisions over a race result. They are also keen to see their times in practice and racing. I would like to see this introduced in all track racing as at this level of racing we should provide the best technology  available.” declared Krister Gardell, FIM Ice Speedway Gladiators World Championship referee.


requires strict and reliable timekeeping processes but, uniquely for a world sport, can actually take steps to improve them constantly.

The FIM Ice Speedway Gladiators World Championship is paving the way for this ambitious programme!

Together with the FIM, TAG Heuer firmly believes that the world of Motorcycling – both on and off the racetrack – not only

Additionally, these systems can intensify the thrills and excitement of these events for the spectators and television viewers.

by Tag Heuer & FIM

Ufa, 11/02/2012 - 12/02/2012

11/02/2012 17:24


Page 1/1

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2012 FIM MOTOCAMP SUPERBLY HOSTED BY THE LOOISE MOTOCLUB OF BELGIUM IN THE BEAUTIFUL COUNTRYSIDE OF THE LIMBURG PROVINCE THE 2012 FIM MOTOCAMP WAS GREAT FUN FOR THE TWO HUNDRED AND SEVENTY RIDERS WHO MADE IT OUT OF THE TWO HUNDRED AND EIGHTY WHO HAD SUBSCRIBED. Heidi van Gelder from Looise MotoClub, organisers of the 2012 FIM Motocamp. /// That a few did not make it was no surprise to me. Riding out to Belgium I had one of the toughest rides I  have experienced in forty four years in the saddle. Rain across the whole of northern Europe was as bad as it gets. Fortunately (in Limburg anyway) the day of the Parade of Nations was sunny and warm. Heidi van Gelder and Gerry Saenen the lead organisers from Looise MotoClub told me a little of their club’s history. They started out as a motocross club – no great surprise in Motocross mad Belgium – and added in touring later. Motocross has ended in their club but there are plans to revive it as a club activity which was good to hear.


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Fim inside

Although professionally I have been travelling to Belgium for years (to Brussels for public affairs work for the FIM) it was a long time since I  was last in Limburg. It is a very beautiful province and as the Parade set off we were treated to wooded countryside, small fields and large numbers of horses to be seen. It must be the horse capital of Belgium! It also appears to be

the sidecar capital of Belgium too. In an imaginative new approach to the Parade of Nations each country was led by a sidecar outfit from Belgium carrying the national flag. At the very front, as the FIM is an international organisation we had a sidecar outfit with the FIM flag held high by two children in costumes in the national colours of the Belgian flag.


It was a real pleasure to attend the 2012 FIM Motocamp and have a chance to meet with so many enthusiastic touring riders. Developing Touring and Leisure activities is a pillar of the FIM Strategic Plan. It was important for me to come to Tessenderlo to show the FIM’s support for this activity. Motorcycling has a bright future in society and the FIM needs to lead the way. Stéphane Desprez, FIM Chief Executive Officer.

FIM is not just about racing ...leisure riders are also part of the FIM family. ///

FIM CEO, Stéphane Desprez was kindly loaned a K series model by the Looise club and he led the parade alongside FIM Leisure & Tourism Commission Director Niels Hansen. Schools along the route had been alerted to the timing of our trip and as we passed each one their teachers allowed the children out to watch this parade of international visitors. Lots of very excited children cheering madly as we rode by….

At the end of the Parade riders were invited to assemble in the town square of Tessenderlo. Local residents mixed with their international visitors and the sun continued to shine. Other FIM duties meant I  had to head off after the Parade and I  had another tough

when I stopped at the channel tunnel I had a hard job keeping the Kawasaki from blowing over so bad was the wind. It all added to the touring adventure for 2012. As ever there were some interesting motorcycles. Being British it was nice to see the old Norton Commando that I  first saw at Glastonbury last year. There was also a Vincent in almost completely original trim, but with a satellite navigation bracket fitted to the handlebars! Niels Hansen is still on what for him is a pretty new motorcycle, his 1300cc Yamaha (the one with the Ohlins suspension as standard). The large capacity Japanese four cylinders in line double overhead camshaft engine is fantastic. If you want one the Yamaha 1300 is a very good example.

Local television attended to interview Stéphane and Niels and the organisers. Organising any FIM touring event is a huge undertaking. Early on there were some doubts locally after bad behaviour at a motorcycle rally. To counter this my predecessor Maggie Sutton wrote a letter explaining what we do, what the FIM is etc. This was copied and delivered by hand to Old Norton, regularly seen at FIM touring events. /// all the local households by the No FIM touring event is complete ride – this time gale force winds descended Looise MotoClub. By the time the event without prizes. The major awards in 2012 on the Flemish coast line. It is always took place it was clear that all the riders were: France, Italy, Denmark, Spain & windy there but this was something worse. were welcomed by the local community Belgium. Motorcycles are pretty good at keeping and the reception could not have been you upright when they are moving. But more friendly. by John Chatterton-Ross

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© Libre Latitude




rider Loris Baz (19 years old) won his spurs in Superstock, category 600cc, where he was champion in 2008, then in the FIM Superstock 1000cc Cup from 2009 up to mid-2012. This season, he became a Kawasaki factory rider in the Superbike World Championship, but he counts himself lucky to have been able to ride in Superstock 1000cc. “The FIM Superstock 1000cc Cup takes place in the shadow of the FIM Superbike World Championship. It gets less media exposure, but its primary objective is to help young riders to prepare for the FIM Superbike or Supersport World Championship. One of the great advantages over national championships is that it takes place in the same environment as the World Championship. The young riders can get to know their way around,


familiarise themselves with the circuits and ride in front of the paddock observers, who rarely miss a race as they are on the spot. Every race weekend, the Superstock 1000cc riders are in the same position as a footballer playing a match with his club in front of the national team manager. That is how it felt to me, at least.” The FIM Superstock 1000cc Cup was launched in 1999 as a joint initiative of the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM) and the FIM Superbike World Championship promoter at the time, the company FGSport. That year, the Supersport category followed in the footsteps of Superbike to officially become the FIM Supersport World Championship. As part of the same trend and following the same logic, the idea of a category

reserved for young riders was mooted, a so called “promotion” category that would give youngsters between the ages of 18 and 25 (the age limit at the time) a chance to familiarise themselves with 1000cc motorcycles (like the Superbike ones), to gain some experience on them and to show what they can do. However, for mainly economic reasons, these motorcycles are subject to technical rules that leave little scope for preparation. The mechanics are close to the production specs, so they are virtually stock machines, hence the name “Superstock”. The three principles behind the launch of the 1000c Superstock can be summed up as: youth, cost management and competition standard.

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DATA SHEET  Motos: 4-cyl 1000 cm3 / bicylindre 1200 cm3  Production series machines like Superbikes  Restrictive technical regulations that allow a

minimum of mechanical preparation  Age limits for riders: from 16 to 26 years  Winner of the 2011 FIM Superstock 1000cc Cup: Davide Giugliano (Ducati)

© Libre Latitude

 FIM Superstock 1000cc Cup  Created in 1999 – Promoter: Infront Motorsport  An international Cup that takes place on European circuits  10 races in 2012

"Superstock 1000cc riders are in the same position as a footballer playing a match with his club in front of the national team manager". - Loris Baz #65 ///

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“The riding standard in the Superstock FIM Cup is excellent”, says Loris Baz. “And the news is starting to spread. Many of the young Superbike World Championship riders spent some time in Superstock. I am one example, but others are my compatriot Maxime Berger and the Italians Giugliano, Badovini and Fabrizio, all three of them former Superstock 1000cc champions with three different makers: Giugliano with Ducati, Badovini with BMW and Fabizio with Suzuki. The Superbike team managers have a good eye. Two races out from the end of the season, there were still three manufacturers in a position to win the title: Ducati with Eddi La Marra, BMW with Sylvain Barrier and Kawasaki avec Bryan Staring. That just goes to show how high the standard is and how well balanced the rules now are.” High-level competitions, hotly disputed races, the young guard hold nothing back, as  Loris Baz confirms: “I’ve never had so many head-to-heads as in Superstock 1000cc. The race format, with ten or twelve laps depending on the length of the circuit, means that you can never afford to let up. You have to get a good start and hit your rhythm straight away.


The slightest mistake is punished at once. Of course that makes for a great training ground. It’s quite frustrating sometimes when you work at a race for the entire weekend and then make one little slip that puts you right out of the running for a win or a podium. It’s a very tough school. I confess I  was sometimes very frustrated and would have liked to see the race distance increased. Still, now I  am riding in the Superbike World Championship, I  appreciate the apprenticeship for what it was. The international standard is very high and the gaps between riders are minute. When I  race now, the tension is enormous, and I  am happy to have come up through the FIM Superstock 1000cc Cup, which is a perfect preparation for toplevel competition.” However, Superstock is not a World Championship. And the main reason is money. In order to control costs so that the teams that enter the FIM Superstock 1000cc Cup can recruit young talents, mostly without sponsors, the organisers voluntarily limit the length of the races and also travel and the attendant costs. As a result, the Superstock 1000cc takes place

entirely in Europe. For the 2012 season, ten meetings were scheduled between April and October. There is no question of going to Australia or the United States, as they do in Superbike, or even to Moscow, as such trips would eat up far too much of the team structures’ limited means. Nonetheless, although Superstock doesn’t have the World Championship moniker, it is a highly “international” competition. The many Europeans who enter every year are joined by Australians, South Africans and Brazilians. The FIM Superstock Cup is a boon for these riders as it gives them the opportunity to ride at the World Superbike Championship but at lower cost. There are clear advantages to this in comparison to a national championship where it is never easy to make an impression quickly or to find the exit that leads to a World Championship. All the same, a season in FIM Superstock Cup has its price. The estimated cost is a little over 100 000 € for a rider and his motorcycle, with competitive material. That is a substantial budget and includes travel, preparation costs, parts and the team’s operations (including the

Superstock 1000cc is the springboard to World SBK. No wonder Australians, South Africans and Brazilians are keen tojoin their European counterparts. ///

© Libre Latitude


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© Libre Latitude


Sylvain Barrier & Eddy La Marra, friends or foes? Who will be the 2012 FIM World Cup Winner...? ///

manager’s and mechanics’ salaries). It is at once a lot and a little, if you divide the amount by the number of travel destinations. But the young riders are up against a thorny problem, namely the search for sponsors. Often, financial support arrives with the rider’s first results. And yet the very essence of Superstock 1000cc is to give young talents a chance to make a name for themselves. “I had the good fortune to have a manufacturer at my side”, recalls Loris Baz. “Without Yamaha Motor France and its financial support, my début would have been much tougher. The factory’s French branch enabled me to become Superstock 600cc champion at 15 and to move up into the 1000cc category at 16. I continued my apprenticeship and my career progression with Yamaha, then with Kawasaki, who have given me the chance to move up into the FIM Superbike World Championship this year. Without their support, it would never have been possible. I have seen and continue to see other riders struggling to

race without the help of a manufacturer or a major sponsor. I have to admit that it’s really hard to do.”

Despite the financial difficulties that are affecting championships across the board and virtually all sports that look to sponsors for support, the FIM Superstock Cup is performing its role as a so-called promotion category to perfection. Easier to get a handle on thanks to a simplified set of technical rules that distinguishes Superstock motorcycles from the highly developed Superbike machines, it allows up-and-coming young riders to “learn the ropes”. They learn to tune their machines but without getting lost in the intricacies of electronic solutions, for example by finding the right balance between the suspension and the tyres. This is ultimately an educational approach, made possible by controlled technical regulations that are easy to interpret and cost-effective to apply. In other words, it strikes the ideal balance for a promotion format that sets

out to be cost-effective for riders and teams alike, but without neglecting the show dimension. Superstock is the curtain raiser for the Superbike races that take place in Europe, and the least that can be said is that the races are a delight for the spectators, who avidly follow the action on the track. A winning formula, indeed. And to prove it, most of the manufacturers invest in the FIM Superstock 1000cc Cup through support teams to train up new riders for their stables. Loris Baz is the most recent example with Kawasaki, another being Davide Giugliano who is riding alongside Carlos Checa in the FIM Superbike World Championship as part of the Team Ducati Althea after winning the FIM Superstock 1000cc Cup for Ducati Althea in 2011. Which just goes to show that Superstock really is a successful training ground for world motorcycle speed racing at the highest level.

by Eric Malherbe

F I M MAG AZ I NE .8 3 / / / S U MMER 2012 47

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They may not be as fast as they used to be, but they are still as popular. Ago and co. are clearly enjoying the attention. ///

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DIJON-PRENOIS On the last weekend in May, the 20th edition of the “Coupes Moto Légende” took place at France’s Dijon-Prenois circuit. The circuit welcomed around 28 000 spectators over the two days, in glorious sunshine, to watch demonstrations of motorcycles and sidecars built from the dawn of motor vehicles up to 1985. Both pre-World War II motorcycles, most of them in perfect condition and running like clockwork, and vintage racing machines could be admired by the many spectators and fans. The event was attended by a number of World Champions, including such well known figures as Giacomo Agostini, Phil Read, Jim Redman, Steve Baker, Rodney Gould, Christian Sarron,


Jan de Vries, Carlos Lavado, Alain Michel, Manuel Herreros, Gérard Coudray, as well as other top riders such as Gianfranco Bonera, Guy Bertin, Jean-François Baldé, Roland Freymond, Bruno Kneubuhler, Hubert Rigal, Pentti Korhonen, Bernard Fau, and many others. The participants and the spectators, who hailed from 20 different countries, made this 20th anniversary edition of the Moto Legend Cups an enormous success, confirming the interest generated by vintage motorcycles of all eras, as well as the legendary riders who live on in our memories.

SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS A month later, it was the turn of the world famous circuit of Spa-Francorchamps to welcome riders and fans for the 10th edition – another anniversary to be celebrated - of the Bikers’ Classics. The Belgian event has also met with growing success throughout these ten years of its existence, and although this 2012 edition had a smaller turnout – the first stage of the Tour de France was held around Liège on Sunday - this is a mere blip in what can be considered as a strong trend of this 21st century. A growing interest in the past - heroes and machines – is a part of our

culture. This is borne out by the fact that vintage cars and aircraft events are also very successful – and not only in Europe. Many legends of motorcycle sport were present in Spa: Phil Read, Jim Redman, Freddie Spencer, Dieter Braun, Steve Baker, Jacques Cornu, Luigi Taveri, Doug Polen, Jean-François Baldé, Roland Freymond, Stéphane Mertens and many others. On Saturday afternoon, all the participants staged a parade led by Freddie Spencer on the old 14 km track, which includes a section now on the public road between Malmédy and Stavelot, passing names such as La Source, l’Eau Rouge, le Raidillon, Kemmel, Les Combes, Burnenville, Masta and then La Carrière and Blanchimont, and ending at the new chicane. It was a very emotional moment that brought back some very good memories for the riders who had known this circuit in the 60s and 70s; it was shortened to a bit less than 7 km – half its original length - in 1979. The other riders were able to discover the track as it was used for motorcycles from 1925 up to 1978. It became a Grand Prix track in 1949 and hosted GPs until 1990, except in 1980 when the Belgian GP was held in Zolder. As usual, on Saturday night, the programme featured the already traditional

Do you recognise this man? Phil Reed's helmet is as legendary as the man himself. ///

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© Marc Petrier

Every year, in Europe as well as in Great Britain – the most traditional country for this type of thing -, events and gatherings focusing on old motorcycles are welcoming more and more visitors and spectators. One aspect of these vintage events is motorcycle sport, with riders who have become real legends in the history of the sport, and with motorcycles that are fascinating examples of the art and technology of other times.

© Marc Petrier


Motorcycles can be an artform; this Ducati is the living proof! ///

Endurance race, the 4 Hours of Spa Classic, for motorcycles built before 1980. The riding level was extremely high and the race very exciting, with suspense until the final laps. The race was won by Belgian riders Stephane Mertens and Patrick Orban on a 1980 Dholda Honda.

In the Village, an exhibition of Ducatis was visited by a large public, who were able to admire bikes such as the one on which Paul Smart won the first Imola 200 Miles in 1972 – 40 years ago! - and the main models that took the Superbike World Champion titles with Raymond Roche, Doug Polen, Carl Fogarty, Troy Bayliss and Carlos Checa on board.

For all fans of vintage motorcycles, there are numerous events to visit - some more this year, and… again next year. The blast from the past is here to stay. The trend must go on!

by Marc Pétrier

Motorcycle racers are a special breed. At 83, Luigi Taveri still rides the tracks that made him famous! ///

© Marc Petrier


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At the end of this season, FreeStyle Motocross rider Fabian Bauersachs will hang up his riding gear. Time to talk about the sport with a man who, at an age that is the happiest in many people’s lives, according to a recent survey, may be considered a “granddad” amongst all the young guns out there but who – like all granddads everywhere – has some interesting views to share. 52

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© Good Shoot



FIM: So, when did you make the jump to FreeStyle? F.B.: In terms of the transition from racing to FreeStyle, the key period of my life was 1999 and 2000. At that time I had passed my exams to become a professional painter – we have a painting business at home – and having been forced to take a year out from racing and jumping, I found myself faced with a choice. Should I  go back to racing or focus completely on FreeStyle? And I  decided to go for FreeStyle. FIM: And you made a nickname for yourself: “FreeStyle Professor”. Can you explain how that came about? F.B.: Actually, I  have two nicknames. The first is Fab, short for Fabian. And the second is Professor FreeStyle. That goes back to 2003, when I was actually leading the Series with a good chance of taking the title. I had a bad crash caused by ruts. As a result, on the ramp, my dynamics did not work as planned and I lost my bike in a 23 metre jump and fell head over heels into the landing area. I was lucky that I made it into the incline at the back, but I broke my pelvis and ischium and tore the ligaments in my thumb. As I  wasn’t wearing chest protection – that was considered uncool in those days - I was covered in scrapes. That was the point at which I  started to think about what can be done to avoid errors like that in advance, as the sport is not without any risks. We should be able to eliminate wheel ruts, bad landings and mistakes in positioning of the ramp, etc. From that point on, I  started to examine everything in detail. I measured up the ramps myself, checked several times that the hills were properly aligned, and took a shovel to the take-off strip and filled in holes, or went

into the run and smoothed something out. People laughed at me a bit to start with, because I was being so picky, but over the last years, it has always served me well and touch wood I  have been spared serious injuries. FIM: Talking about injuries, you have ridden in all three disciplines: Motocross, Supercross and FreeStyle. If you had to compare, what would you say? F.B.: Whether we are talking about Motocross, Supercross, or FreeStyle, the question is not whether you have an accident but rather when. You just can’t get away from it. In all the years I’ve been riding, including my time in Motocross,

might get caught up. And of course you sometimes get hurt. When it comes to FreeStyle Motocross, I would say that if you go into it with a sensible attitude, if you know your limits and prepare and train properly, you can keep the risks fairly well under control and decide what risks you are prepared to take and what is too much. That’s because you really are alone and if you say to yourself, today I’m going this far and no further, you can set your own limits. That’s unfortunately not the case in Motocross and Supercross because you are not alone on the track. But, coming back to FreeStyle, if you make one little mistake you’re in big trouble!

© Oliver Franke

FIM: So, tell us about yourself… Fabian Bauersachs: I am 33 years old and was born in Germany in 1979. I have been actively involved in Motocross since I  was 10 years old, participating in regional races, German Championships, international motocross races and the German ADAC Supercross Series. I  always really liked jumping! The motto “Faster, Higher, Stronger” always applied to me, whatever the sport, be it BMX, snowboard, skiing or what ever. And that was what drew me to Motocross. And when the first FreeStyle films came over from America – it was in 1990 if I  remember rightly and it was still called Super-Jump at that time I  think – I  got the bug, the jumping bug. It was always fun for me.


Fabian the rider: look, Mama, no hands! /// I got hurt several times. I  broke my ankle, and got plenty of bumps and bruises and scrapes. But in this sport, you get tougher, I  would say. Instead of saying: “I’m injured”, I  told myself “It’s just a little scratch”. It’s no longer considered anything serious. When I  moved from Motocross to Supercross, things got quite a bit tougher still, because it all goes so fast and there is much more action. Supercross unleashes so much energy. I had quite some crashes because someone in front of me made a mistake or someone jumped into me from behind or something of that nature. That’s the nub of the problem. You are riding on a smaller track with ten to twenty other guys and you can’t just ride how you want to. You also depend on the others, and if they make mistakes or take too many risks, you

FIM: What does it take to be a good FreeStyle rider then? Guts, or is there more to it than that? F.B.: To my mind, a good freestyler isn’t just someone with guts. It’s not someone who‘s reckless or crazy or tired of living. I think it takes a combination of real skill, thinking – riding with your brain and working out what risks you’re taking –, and motivation – how far do you want to go and what limits do you set for yourself – and full concentration. And this is the combination that decides on the duration of your riding career or your participation at a high level. It doesn’t get you anywhere if you appear in all the media for two or three months because you pulled off the most monstrous trick and then you disappear from the scene for six or nine months because you got injured. Every time you fall, even if you’re not really

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injured, you get a sort of mental block. You realise this sport is risky business. It is really hard to keep overcoming that feeling again and again so that you can ride comfortably without any stress. So you need a combination of common sense and a dose of guts, but you really need to know what you are doing on the motorcycle and what your limits are. Once you’ve decided to go for the trick, you can’t really abort it or make up for it somewhere else. FIM: FreeStyle riders come in all sizes. You are a rather tall person whereas Brice Izzo for example is a much smaller rider. Is there an ideal physique for FreeStyle? F.B.: When it comes to the difference between tall and short riders, the obvious thing is the way it looks when they perform. When a tall rider does tricks like the “Cliffhanger” or a “Tsunami” or a double trick where you go into an outstretched position, it looks much more spectacular. When a guy like Peter Pilat does the “Tsunami flip”, compared with Brice, it is basically the same trick but when Peter, a guy who is over six feet tall hangs down, it creates a totally different visual impression. Apart from the optical point of view, there is also the technical part. Tall riders weigh more of course. I think Peter Pilat must weight between 78 and 80 kilos. That’s about what I weigh. I  am just over six feet tall and depending on my training I weigh between 78 and 80 kilos. Whereas Brice Izzo – I  read a profile of him recently – weighs between 63 and


65. That’s a difference of 15 kilos, or even 20 if you take a rider like Maikel Melero for example. And for the big guy that is mass that you have to accelerate over a short run-up. That makes it difficult for big riders, including me, to build up speed over a short run-up to be able to jump the distance. I have noticed again and again that on some run-ups, where I  have been in second gear from some time and am accelerating hard, Izzo or Melero will be just shifting into second and starting to accelerate, whereas I  have been stepping on the gas for at least 5  metres. And that’s another small point I’d like to get the judges to appreciate. That you need to take the rider’s build into account, so that riders who are really fluid are not scored too highly or put at an unfair advantage over others who are heavier and have to concentrate harder, let’s say, to make sure everything goes perfectly in the run-up and on the hill so that they can make the distance. And it’s the same as with the gear system. There are pro’s and con’s to everything. A small rider can stretch out faster than a tall one, but when a tall rider gets there and does the same trick, it’s very impressive. It all makes for a good interplay of factors, let’s put it like that. FIM: Since you mention the gear system, Massimo Bianconcini’s motorcycle has a special lever for the foot and a stick for the gears. Is that to enhance the show aspect? F.B.: In FreeStyle, we don’t have any proper rules about what can or cannot be changed

on a motorcycle. So you can have different systems on your motorcycle. Riders will create their own systems. When you do tricks like the No-Hand Flip, NacNac Flip or whatever, you normally have to hook your foot in under the gear lever before you let go with your hands or pass your leg over or whatever, otherwise the motorcycle would continue to rotate and the rider would fall downwards and lose contact with the bike. When you change gears in the air, you go into third gear. And when you land, you have to check where neutral is so that you can change into second, so that you are in the right gear for the next ramp. So to make it easier, many drivers have built a stick on to the bike. Massimo for example has completely eliminated the gear lever and soldered a stick on to the gear box so that he can shift into second with his finger. He has a permanent bar where the gear lever normally is. He has soldered a metal bar on to the bike and can always hook his foot in under it. So when he does the tricks, he doesn’t shift gears. He lands and is still in second gear. In small arenas, everything happens in second gear. At other events, for example X-Fighters events in Rome or Dubai, where they do incredibly long jumps – 38 or 42 metres - the guys have to shift into third or even fourth gear! But in smaller arenas, where you are limited by the dimensions of the venue, the riders stay in second the whole time. So you can make it a bit easier for yourself. Some riders like that and others don’t. Personally I don’t like the system because I have much more control under the gear level and I am

© Good Shoot

You need expert eyes to judge freestyle. Fabian is no exception; most judges have riding experience. ///

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more stable, because the gear lever is a bit longer, so I can do my tricks better. Every rider has to decide for himself. Others, for example, have soldered on a sort of foot rest the other way round. When you step on it, it folds away and then pops out right again. You can hook your foot in even before you get to the ramp and ride it up with your foot already locked in. But  it also limits your freedom of movement somewhat. You can’t wriggle your foot back and forth as much. Some riders appreciate it and others don’t. Everything has its advantages and drawbacks, obviously. FIM: You said Massimo switches gears with his finger...? F.B.: The gear shifting process remains just the same. So when he presses on the stick, it’s just as if he was pressing the gear lever, and he goes into first. And he simply pulls the end upwards to shift into second. The advantage is that during the run you don’t have to think about what gear you’re in. In recent years, I’ve had to come to a stop sometimes after I’ve done a trick because I  was in third gear. I  have to stop briefly and check whether I’m in neutral then shift into second. Unfortunately for me, I  will be penalised for this by the judging system, because I lose my fluidity because I have to stop briefly to let out my flip lever, to adjust my steering damper and make sure I’m in the right gear. The judging system currently focuses on so many tiny details. To my mind, it should be a bit more balanced, so someone who does clean and difficult tricks is not penalised if he uses a normal gear system. The other guy’s performance is just a fraction better and the fact that a rider has to stop for a second to check these things should not make that much difference in points. FIM: In economic terms, can a FreeStyle rider live on what he makes from the sport or is it difficult? F.B: From what I  gather, living directly from practising FreeStyle is pretty difficult. Some sponsors do support riders with considerable sums but they expect something in return. Because the risks are high, and if you are out with injury during the season, it’s not very interesting for a sponsor. That is what you might call the shadow side of the sport. If you want to stay at the top, you have to live on the edge and be fully fit, and it’s like walking a tightrope. You tread a very fine line where everything goes well, and as soon as you make a small mistake, things can go wrong


© Good Shoot


Whether you are a rider or a judge, sharing experience is important in FreeStyle. /// and you might find yourself injured. Of course that doesn’t mean that the riders don’t have any control or that they go over their limits, but it is really difficult to practise every detail to perfection because the tricks are extremely challenging now and you can never control everything 100%. I would say that American riders like Nate Adams, for example, can certainly live comfortably from FreeStyle, or the Metal Mulisha crew, who have their fixed sponsors, but also do a lot of merchandising and market videos and things. That is one way, apart from making first, second and place in the contests where you have to give it 120%. There are also riders who make money with videos, magazines and newspapers and so on, with photo shoots for example. And once you’ve made that leap, you may be able to make your living from it. FreeStyle is a tough sport to try to earn a living from and still have something left in the kitty for when you retire from competition. FIM: Yes, and you will be retiring from the sport too. What about Fabian Bauersachs’ life after competition? F.B.: I am proud to have been in the sport all those years, and proud of my success. In my opinion, I  always did my job well and had enough successful rides, and I am satisfied with my achievements. Now I have to – and want to - focus on life after FreeStyle.

And the obvious answer after all those years was to carry on the family painting business. I really get a kick out of it because you can be very creative and really express yourself when you paint walls and so on. And that is my next plan. I  shall run the painting business as my “real” job. On the side, I am absolutely thrilled that I shall be able to stay in the Sport Plus and put my experience and knowledge to use. I  also work as a track technician, with Sven Schreiber and all the people who work on the construction of the track. I take care of the final details and finishing touches and give the technical guys advice and also hands-on support. I  can drive a dumper truck, I  know how it all works and what’s possible. I  try to apply all my knowledge to make the events even safer. I see things through different eyes from people who don’t ride and who don’t have direct feedback or a background in the sport. I will also act as a FIM FreeStyle World Championship judge. For years, I  was the guy who used to complain a bit about the judging system, and now I  am happy to be able to contribute to all these things, to help eradicate mistakes, get the judging balance right and make the good things even better.

by Isabelle Larivière & Dirk De Neve

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The FIM Magazine – Ride With Us – N°83  

The FIM Magazine – Ride With Us – N°83

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