Red Bull gathered together some of the best motocross racers from around the world for the inaugural ‘Give Me Five’ meeting in Madrid last weekend. Here’s what went down…
The Valdemorillo circuit just outside the capital city was the hard-pack host location for a curious new fixture on the busy motocross calendar. “It was a mix of motocross and a bit of supercross,” explained 2012 AMA Champion Ryan Dungey, who would go on to win the race ahead of FIM MX1 World Champ Tony Cairoli and Marvin Musquin also making the podium. “The soil was very slippery and hard underneath and that made it tough. The lap-times were short, less than a minute thirty and it meant for us those sprints were hard but the racing was cool for the fans.”
Over 9000 spectators filled the stadium seats erected around the fast jumps and corners to watch the likes of the factory Red Bull KTM team and local favourites such as Jose Butron, Jonathan Barragan and Jorge Prado do battle with some other MX Grand Prix regulars like Dylan Ferrandis. This meeting presented a fascinating new format; a series of qualification heats with five riders running five laps. The similarities to BMX even went down to the starting gate!
In the ‘Main Event’ it would be Dungey who would walk away on top of the podium after a crash by the holeshotting Ken Roczen and a bad start from Cairoli. “It was a fun track and in general it was a nice day,” said AMA 250SX West coast champion and four times MX2 class Motocross of Nations victor Roczen. “The fans were unbelievable. I crashed after the holeshot in the Main and only with five laps there was not much I could do! I really liked being in Madrid. We had a good night and it was a cool experience. The format was totally different and it would be cool to have more events like this.”
“I tried something different at the start and got it wrong and the back slipped out,” explained Cairoli. “I saw I was in fifth and then realised that meant last place! I made some good passes though and just ran out of time. I was getting closer to Ryan. It was nice to have such close and clean racing.”
“We don’t have a GP in Spain any more so it is good to come and see the fans here,” 222 carried on. “We are happy. Red Bull are our sponsor so we have to come here but it has been a nice race and the track wasn’t risky. There was nothing to lose or win; it was nice to have that feeling.”
Musquin made it into the top three: “In the Main I had a good start and then Kenny crashed in front of me so I was leading the race. I was riding a bit tight. It was rocky and slippery and I wasn’t doing well. Dungey and Cairoli were ‘on it’ and got past me. It is good to be on the podium. It was really cool to be here. Red Bull is one of my sponsors and I want to thank them for making this event happen. It was the first time [for me] running a race of five laps. The crowd were really crazy and Spanish fans are pretty wild.”
While the injured Jeffrey Herlings could not participate and Ken De Dycker was also unavailable it was still a top turnout for the first ‘Give Me Five’ and it will be interesting to see if the event can become an annual ‘pull’ for best the AMA and FIM series has to offer.
Photos by Juan Pablo Acevedo www.mx1onboard.com