Lotte van Drunen of the Beurspro KTM team claimed a podium finish during the EMX85 European Championship motocross final at Riola Sardo in Sardinia. Van Drunen came within an inch of victory in the first race, after having beeing hampered by lappers, and in the second race she recovered from an indifferent start to finish third.
Lotte finished at the top of the log of the North/West qualifying region, and she was full of confidence as they travelled down to Riola Sardo. She was well prepared, and the sandy track would suit her, adding to her confidence.
Lotte posted the fourth fastest time during free training, proving that she indeed had the speed for a top-line result. She improved on that during qualifying, and was the third rider to be called to the gates.
It was baking in Sardinia as the racing got underway. Lotte got the holeshot, and immediately set a punishing pace. This allowed her and two other riders to break away from the pack. She fended off several attacks, and opened up a little gap. She was still in the lead with half a lap to go, but unfortunately for her, a lapped rider got in the way, which cost her quite a bit of time. She got passed with two corners left to go, and she crossed the line in second, very disappointed, but still the favour of the day after a hugely competitive race.
With not much time between races, there was not much opportunity to dwell on her disappointment. Her anxiety was pushed up by the fact that the team discovered a problem with the bike just before the start of the second race, prompting her to change bikes. She launched off the start in tenth position, but she was clearly one of the fastest riders on track, and worked her way up to third.
With 2-3 finishes, Lotte was third overall for the day, a remarkable achievement. She will now focus on the rest of the Open Dutch Championship races. The series continues next weekend in Arkel.