The 65th edition of the historic Motocross of Nations saw team South Africa (Gareth Swanepoel, Tyla Rattray, Shannon Terreblanche) place 6th overall in St Jean d’Angely France over the weekend.
A sellout crowd of 68.000 spectators from all over the world lined the hillside circuit waving their colorful flags to support their countries stars. Tyla Rattray rode a strong first moto for 5th while Terreblanche battled against the stronger 450 machines.
Gareth Swanepoel rode an impressive second moto for South Africa as he kept Belgian Kevin Strijbos in his sights while holding off Brett Metcalfe and team Australia. Swanepoel’s 6th place finish put team SA high up the score boards and in contention for a podium position despite a tough result for Terreblanche.
The grand finale had the crowd on their feet as the gate dropped. Ryan Villopoto and Ryan Dungey controlled the race put front while Rattray secured 3rd in front of Britain’s Tommy Searle. ‘Swanie’ took second gate pic for SA and although he got a good jump he was swallowed up down the start straight and left down in the pack. He recovered to 18th spot with Rattray securing 3rd.
“This is my seventh MXON for South Africa and as always it is great to represent my country. The team missed last year due to financial constraints so a big thanks needs to go out to the guys that helped put this together. Geoff Den our team manager got the ball rolling and Billy Docherty and Malcolm Joubert from from G2 trading stepped up to help as did Jaco Smit , Adillia Teixeira and all the SA media. I also want to thank G2 Trading , Aquarius Shipping International , Bidvest Yamaha , Sun City , Classique Aviation , Larmesh Metals , Two Wheels , Enduro World , Full Throttle , Race Star Graphics who all contributed to the team.
Langston Racing , TRP Products , Venture Sport , Scott , IMAS , Jonnesway Tools ,Bike Product Services all donated prizes to help raise funds so thanks guys!
And of course thanks to the Star Racing Yamaha guys and my mechanic Eric for supporting me. I can’t wait for MXON in Belgium next year!” vowed Swanie.
Swanepoel will travel home to South Africa for a well-deserved rest before returning to the USA where he has extended his contract with the Star Racing Yamaha team to race in the AMA SX lites and MX championship for 2012.
Video courtesy of KawasakiTV
Nations top ten: USA, France, Australia, Great Britain, Belgium, South Africa, Germany, Spain, The Netherlands, Estonia.
Race 1: 1. Chad Reed (AUS, Honda), 35:52.640; 2. Ken Roczen (GER, KTM), +0:03.485; 3. Ryan Dungey (USA, Suzuki), +0:04.919; 4. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:21.469; 5. Tyla Rattray (RSA, Kawasaki), +0:30.845; 6. Tanel Leok (EST, TM), +0:32.870; 7. Jonathan Barragan (ESP, Kawasaki), +0:38.278; 8. Marvin Musquin (FRA, KTM), +0:44.042; 9. Dean Wilson (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:57.674; 10. Joel Roelants (BEL, KTM), +0:58.484;
Race 2: 1. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Yamaha), 34:14.392; 2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:02.424; 3. Ryan Villopoto (USA, Kawasaki), +0:02.813; 4. Ken Roczen (GER, KTM), +0:05.097; 5. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, Suzuki), +0:19.281; 6. Gareth Swanepoel (RSA, Yamaha), +0:45.403; 7. Brett Metcalfe (AUS, Suzuki), +0:45.914; 8. Davide Guarneri (ITA, Kawasaki), +0:56.746; 9. Carlos Campano (ESP, Yamaha), +0:57.873; 10. Arnaud Tonus (SUI, Yamaha), +1:07.283
Race 3: 1. Ryan Villopoto (USA, Kawasaki), 34:51.718; ; 2. Ryan Dungey (USA, Suzuki), +0:00.465; 3. Tyla Rattray (RSA, Kawasaki), +0:05.182; 4. Tommy Searle (GBR, Kawasaki), +0:18.156; 5. Davide Guarneri (ITA, Kawasaki), +0:22.628; 6. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, Honda), +0:24.594; 7. Chad Reed (AUS, Honda), +0:24.916; 8. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Yamaha), +0:25.740; 9. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:26.356; 10. Brett Metcalfe (AUS, Suzuki), +0:27.098