Lotte van Drunen of the Beurspro KTM team finished 12th in the 85cc world championships at Megalopolis in Greece. Van Drunen crossed the line in ninth spot in race one, and 13th in the final race after a bad start.
Lotte knew that she was up for the challenge of her life, since she was up against some of the world’s top 85cc riders. With temperatures hoving around the 40 degrees Celsius, the challenge was all the more daunting. Lotte started off on Friday with an interview conducted by the MXGP media crew, and she also attended to the technical controls and the team presentations.
The Saturday program was started early to try and avoid the hottest part of the day. Lotte finished 12th in the free training, and she followed this up by qualifying 14th, although she was now a second closer to the leading riders.
The intention was to start early on Sunday because of the expected high temperatures, but alas the time schedule had to be changed on three occasions due to track preparation problems. The first race was supposed to have started at 9h15, but eventually got going at noon, in the boiling heat.
Lotte got away well in race one, but opted to not take risks on the slippery and underprepared start straight. This dropped her to 15th. She picked up her lap times, and posted times comparable to the fifth placed rider, which helped her to finish the race in ninth spot. The riders were hosed down after the race, and Lotte returned to the paddock as a happy lady.
The second race started at 15h50, again under 43 degree heatwave conditions. Lotte launched mid-pack into the race, and had a lot more work to do. She got up to 12th, and closed up a 5 second gap to the 11th placed rider. In so doing, she made a mistake, though, and lost the 12th position.
Lotte finished 12th overall in the 85cc world championship, a magnificent performance for a young lady against 42 of the best 85cc riders in the world. She will be in action in a Rookies Cup event in France next weekend.