The New Zealander took pole position, more than a second faster than any of her rivals, in the morning practice session and shot out of gate in the first moto of the weekend to claim the holeshot award before a tricky moment in a gnarly rut at turn two pushed her temporarily back to sixth. With a series of impressive passes she was already back to second by the end of the first lap and on lap three charged into a lead which she maintained to the finish of the twenty-minute-plus-two-lap race to take a clear victory by more than four seconds.
Courtney Duncan: “I was on pole with fastest lap in practice, which is unusual for me, and then I got a good start after my Big Van World MTX KX250 hooked up really well off the gate but then I tipped over at turn two and made it difficult for myself. I made some good passes quickly to get back into the lead but hat’s off to Larissa; she rode so good and kept me honest but I could handle the pressure and in the end I could save some energy for race two tomorrow morning. It’s been a bit of a disjointed season with so long between races but you just have to try to snap into it and sharpen the blade; but I’m a racer so it’s not too difficult for me.”
Belgium’s Amandine Verstappen maintained fifth place throughout the race on her 9MM Energy Drink BUD Racing Kawasaki despite constant pressure from the series points leader. She goes to the final moto of the series tomorrow morning joint-fifth in the championship.