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Red Bull Riders Cup: Hayden Gillim on pole

Red Bull Riders Cup: Hayden Gillim on pole

Pole position for Saturday´s Red Bull Riders Cup went to the AMA U.S. Team and visiting American 13 year old Hayden Gillim.

Pole position for Saturday´s Red Bull Riders Cup went to the AMA U.S. Team and visiting American 13 year old Hayden Gillim on a day when wet and slippery conditions saw almost all the Red Bull Rookies, including Gillim crash at least once in the three practice sessions. Second fastest was 16 year old South African Mathew Scholtz who led a solid block of MotoGP Team members filling positions 2 to 6.

Scholtz blotted his record by sliding off in each of the three sessions making Matthew Hoyle and Jakub Kornfeil the stars for the MotoGP team as they qualified third and fourth without making an error all day. They were quick and very consistent even as the track began to dry and then got soaked again.

`I´m happy with that,´ said 17 year old Englishman Hoyle. `It puts me in a good position on the grid and they say that there is a 70% chance of rain tomorrow so that would be OK. I went out in that final session when it was really wet and went quicker than I did this morning so I´m happy with that.´

Kornfeil, the 15 year old from the Czech Republic was surprised to have done so well. `I don´t like racing in the rain. The wet track isn´t too bad but I hate the rain because it makes it difficult to see. I was feeling good today though and I guess it will be OK if it is wet tomorrow but I think all riders would prefer to race in the dry. The bike is good and I know the track well now so I am hoping for a good race.´

With 8 of the top 10 riders belonging to the MotoGP team the European based squad are favoured to hang on to the Riders Cup but know that things could easily change if they make mistakes as so many of them did in practice. Indianapolis winner Sturla Fagerhaug did himself no favours when he crashed early in the first qualifying session. `The back slid out and as it tried to highside me it wrenched my wrist so the damage was done before I hit the ground,´ said the 16 year old Norwegian. `I went out in the second session but I could hardly turn the throttle coming out of the corner, it´s not going to be easy in the race.´

Fagerhaug was actually 3rd fastest behind Hoyle and Kornfeil in the wetter second qualifying session but 12th overall thanks to the dryer session being the one he crashed in. So he starts on the third row of the grid. MotoGP Rookies Cup winner JD Beach sits in front of him on the outside of the second row. The 16 year old American also fell and twisted his ankle but claims that it will not slow him down too much. AMA U.S. Cup winner, 14 year old Benny Solis, also slid off in the first qualifying session, missed a few minutes of the second qualifying session while his bike was still being repaired but was unhurt and sits behind Fagerhaug in 16th place on the grid.

Gillim was one of the stars of the Indianapolis Riders Cup race but slid of then in similarly slippery conditions while battling for the lead with Fagerhaug and Scholtz. Wet or dry the pole man is in with a good chance on Saturday. `It was pretty slick out there but I was pretty happy to be near the front through the sessions and happy to be on pole but disappointed that I crashed on the next lap,´ said Gillim.

Scholtz sits second and could also be in the hunt for the win but knows he can´t repeat the error strewn day of practice. `I don´t know what to say, three crashes in three sessions. Not good.´


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