Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1 will bring its successful FIM Motocross World Championship campaign to a close this weekend with the 16th and final round of the series taking place at the natural and undulating Talkessel circuit in Teutschenthal for the Grand Prix of Germany.
The team heads to the popular and busy venue close to the city of Halle with Clement Desalle already confirmed as MX1 runner-up for the second time in three years with the factory RM-Z450. Team-mate Tanel Leok still has a chance of moving up from eighth in the premier class standings to sixth position if he can outpoint both Xavier Boog and Kevin Strijbos by 24 points with a maximum of 50 left up for grabs in the final two motos of the year.
The Belgian and Estonian have already completed 30 races (15 Grands Prix) this season so far and have obtained 10 podium trophies between them. Desalle has won two Grands Prix in 2012 to date which takes his tally to a grand total of nine in the three seasons he has attempted with the RM-Z450. Another rostrum finish would make his record for 2010, ’11 and ’12 stand at 11, 8 and 10 for an impressively-consistent haul.
“We finished runner-up again this year and for sure it is not where I want to be but this season has been difficult for some personal reasons and for trying to find that top form every week,” said Desalle, who has finished 3rd and 2nd in the last two GPs at Teutschenthal. “Of course the goal is to close the season in a good way and aside from some preparation for the Motocross of Nations this week I have been thinking about Teutschenthal.
“If I am honest it is not my favourite track and is pretty old-fashioned,” he continues. “I hope the level of preparation will be good. As I have said many times, if the track is something the riders can have fun with, then the racing will show it. Other than that my right hand is still not 100% and bothers me when I’m on the bike. If we can get a good feeling on Saturday then I’m sure we’ll be fine.”
Teutschenthal has been a regular fixture on the FIM Motocross World Championship schedule and has enjoyed excellent attendances in the last couple of years through the emergence of some fast local talent. The layout has modernised to become slower and more technical but the same off-cambered turns and banking remain in place; and if the dry forecast holds, then a rough hard-pack terrain lies in store.
“Talkessel has changed quite a bit since I’ve been racing there but it is OK; quite fast and it can be difficult to pass,” says Leok who will contest his last GP outing for the Belgian crew this weekend. “The tight corners mean that you really have to be close and run up the inside of somebody to overtake.
“For sure it would be good to end the year with another podium,” he adds on his recent run of good form and speed. “I think this will be a good track and event for me and we’ll know for sure where we stand come the first laps on Sunday.”
MX1 World Championship Standings (after 15 of 16 rounds): 1. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 642 points; 2. Clement Desalle (BEL, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), 554 p.; 3. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Kawasaki), 502 p.; 4. Christophe Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), 496 p.; 5. Ken de Dycker (BEL, KTM), 478 p.; 6. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, KTM), 389 p.; 7. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), 372 p.; 8. Tanel Leok (EST, Rockstar Energy Suzuki World MX1), 365 p.; 9. Rui Goncalves (POR, Honda), 315 p.; 10. Shaun Simpson (GBR, Yamaha), 298 p.