Cervantes, Nambotin and Renet Victorious On Day One At GP of Greece
Epic battles throughout all classes saw an explosive start to the FIM Maxxis Enduro World Championship GP Maxxis of Greece in Kalambaka. In front of the world famous monastic heritage sites of the peaceful and picturesque Kalambaka, the world’s best enduro riders battled for victory. Remaining unbeaten in the championship to date, the KTM duo of Ivan CERVANTES and Christophe NAMBOTIN won their respective Enduro 3 and Enduro 1 categories. Husqvarna’s Pela RENET emerged from a titanic four-rider battle as the winner of the Enduro 2 class. Beta’s Giacomo REDONDI kept his cool in the Greek heat to win the Enduro Junior class while Yamaha’s Davide SORECA was victorious in the 125 Youth Cup.
Remaining unbeaten in the Enduro 3 category, Spain’s Ivan CERVANTES recorded his fifth victory of the series. Fifth at the end of lap one, the KTM rider charged his way forward to secure a comfortable 15-second margin of victory. “It’s fantastic to win again,” confirmed CERVANTES. “I didn’t have a great start to the day but soon found a faster pace and was able to take the win. I’m delighted with how the day has worked out.” Despite topping Friday’s Super Test, France’s Mathias BELLINO (Husqvarna) found himself in sixth position at the end of lap one. Working hard to recover from his mistakes, the Frenchman rode well to place as runner-up to CERVANTES. For Australian Matt PHILLIPS, the day was one of mixed fortunes. Setting the pace early on to lead, the KTM rider crashed on the second extreme test and eventually placed third. Setting the fastest time in three of the day’s 13 special tests, Portugal’s Luis CORREIA (Beta) took fourth while France’s Jeremy JOLY (KTM) equalled his best result of the series so far with fifth.
The Enduro 1 category again belonged to France’s Christophe NAMBOTIN (KTM). Finding the enduro test and the technical extreme test to his liking the Frenchman claimed a comfortable 38-second margin of victory. “I’m really happy to take my fifth victory of the season,” commented NAMBOTIN. “It’s been a good day for me with no big mistakes. Hopefully I can win again tomorrow.” Behind Nambotin the fight for the final steps of the podium was fought out between France’s Jeremy TARROUX (Sherco) and Finland’s Eero REMES (TM). Bettering REMES in the final two special tests of the day, TARROUX forged ahead to secure his first runner-up result of the season. Despite holding TARROUX at bay for the majority of the day, REMES suffered some technical issues and was forced to retire in the closing stages of the race. With REMES out of contention, France’s Anthony BOISSIERE (Sherco) benefited from REMES’ misfortune to take third. Delivering a consistent performance throughout the day, KTM’s Cristobal GUERRERO (S) took fourth. Completing the top five, Spain’s Jaume BETRIU (Husqvarna) ended his day in fifth.
Recording his second victory of the season, France’s Pela RENET (Husqvarna) took the Enduro 2 class win. Involved in a three-rider battle with Johnny AUBERT (F-Beta) and Alex SALVINI (I-Honda), the Husqvarna rider worked his way from third position to the front of the field. Holding off a last minute charge by Antoine MEO (F-KTM), Renet finally took the victory. “It’s been another incredible battle for the victory,” told RENET. “First I fought with Aubert and Salvini and then on the final lap Meo attacked hard. Thankfully this time I made no mistakes and the win was mine.” Recovering strongly from a disastrous start to his day, MEO eventually placed second. Ending lap one over 25 seconds behind the leaders due to numerous crashes, the Frenchman then settled into the race. Improving with each lap he found a way past both AUBERT and SALVINI to take the runner-up result. Enjoying his strongest performance of the series, SALVINI challenged hard for the race win. Losing out on the final lap, he placed third. Despite leading the way for the first half of the day, a couple of mistakes from AUBERT was all it took to miss out on the race win and finish fourth. Rounding out the top five, Spain’s Oriol MENA (Beta) was fifth.
In the Enduro Junior class, Italy’s Giacomo REDONDI (Beta) put an end to Britain’s Danny MCCANNEY’s (Beta) winning ways. Separated by half a second entering the final special test, a perfect run by REDONDI and a crash from MCCANNEY, saw the Italian record his first win of the championship. With MCCANNEY remounting to take second, France’s Loïc LARRIEU (Husqvarna) ended his day just eight seconds behind MCCANNEY in third. Italy’s Nicolo MORI (KTM) comfortably placed fourth while Alessandro BATTIG (I-Honda) was fifth.
Recording his third race win of the series, Italy’s Davide SORECA (Yamaha) was the best of the 125 Youth class. Nicolas PELLEGRINELLI (I-KTM) edged out Chile’s Benjamin HERRERA (TM) to take second. Sweden’s Albin ELOWSON (Husqvarna) and Jeremy MIROIR (F-Yamaha) completed the top five.