Grand Prix of Italy Info

MANTOVA (ITALY), 16 May 2008 – The beginning of what will probably be a wet weekend with rain on Saturday and Sunday saw the FIM Motocross World Championship collective all set up at Mantova, the Italian city hosting the fifth round of the 2008 GP Campaign.

A superb Yamaha Monster Motocross’ David Philippaerts enters Italy as the series leader and looks forward to improving on his last year’s result at Mantova, where he was knocked out twice. One of his main actual challengers is GPKR’s Sebastien Pourcel, the winner of the  latest three Lovemytime Pole Position Awards who also topped the podium in Portugal.

Teka Suzuki MX1’s Steve Ramon and early series leader Ken de Dycker look forward to a wet weekend as they are both solid in those conditions; Ramon currently holds the runner up spot while team mate and Belgian countryman De Dycker is fifth.

The MX1 Italian fans will be busy keeping their eyes on series leader David Philippaerts

Winner of last year’s Italian GP, Yamaha Monster Motocross’ Joshua Coppins has not yet come back to the top of the podium which Honda factory riders Billy Mackenzie (CAS Honda) and Marc de Reuver (Martin Honda) and factory KTM rider Jonathan Barragan (AXO KTM Silver Action) aim at this season. The three youngsters have come close to it courtesy of superb performances this year; though they have missed the consistency throughout the entire GP.

As Yamaha Red Bull De Carli’s Tony Cairoli enters his home Grand Prix with two damaged ribs after crashing out in heat two at Sevlievo last weekend, current series leader Tyla Rattray of Red Bull KTM Factory Racing is painted as the favourite for the weekend.

Tony Cairoli is due to ride with two damaged ribs and will probably face a very tough weekend

Though the South African’s first enemy might be his team mate Tommy Searle; the British just won his first season’s GP in Bulgaria and was incredibly quick in the preseason races at Mantova.

A third KTM rider might be another danger; KTM UK’s Shaun Simpson made Searle’s win in Bulgarian an hard fought one as he lead until the final lap of the second heat. Simpson, who took his maiden career podium last weekend, was also one of the quickest riders at Mantova this winter.

Yamaha Ricci Racing’s riders Nicolas Aubin and Davide Guarneri, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Rui Goncalves, Molson Kawasaki’s Stephen Sword and Suzuki Inotec’s Xavier Boog are expected to ride solid at Mantova.

Unfortunately MX2 rookie Joel Roelants of Champ KTM will miss the event due to an injury.

Tommy Searle is pumped after winning his first season’s GP last weekend


The track is named after car racing legend Tazio Nuvolari, as the driver was born and lived in Mantova. It was inaugurated in 1982 after a lot of work was put in to build it in cooperation with former Motocross World Champion Michele Rinaldi, now the head of the Yamaha Monster Motocross’ team. The ground is a mix between the natural soil (30%) and the sand (70%), which makes it one of the few sandy circuits in the Italian peninsula. Last year Coppins (MX1) and Cairoli (MX2) took the overalls with two double wins each at the end of a sunny event, while this year the weather forecast predicts rain for the entire weekend.

Mantova is one of the very few sandy courses in Italy

The city of Mantova is named after the Latin word “Mantua”, which refers to an Etruscan god. The city itself has 46.372 inhabitants spread on an area of 63,9 square metres. Mantova is in the centre of the Pianura Padana, the widest flatland in Italy; it is famous for having been the base of the very important Italian dynasty Gonzaga, who ruled the city for four centuries since 1328. Palazzo Ducale was actually built by the Gonzaga and it is still one of the most famous spots to watch once in Mantova, together with the Palazzo Te, the Torre dell’Orologio and the Basilica di Sant’Andrea. Mantova is one of the key cities for the Italian culture, as the poet Virgil and Renaissance painter Andrea Mantegna lived there.


Saturday May 17: Women’s World Championship Free Practice 1 at 9:00 am; MX2 Free Practice at 10:00 am; MX1 Free Practice 1 at 11:00 am; MX2 Pre-Qualifying Practice at 12:00 am; KTM Trophy Free Practice at 12:55 am; Women’s World Championship Free Practice 2 at 1:20 pm; MX1 Free Practice 2 at 2:00 pm; MX2 Qualifying Race 1 at 3:00 pm; MX2 Qualifying Race 2 at 3:45 pm; KTM Trophy Time Practice at 4:15 pm; MX1 Time Practice at 4:40 pm; MX2 Last Chance Qualifying Practice at 5:25 pm; Women’s World Championship Time Practice at 6:05 pm; KTM Trophy Race 1 at 6:50 pm (local time).

Sunday May 18: KTM Trophy Warm Up at 8:30 am; Women’s World Championship Warm-up at 9:00 am; MX2 Warm-up at 9:30 am; MX1 Warm-up at 10:00 am; KTM Trophy Race 2 at 10:25 am; Women’s World Championship Race 1 at 11:10 am; MX2 Grand Prix Race 1 at 12:10 am; MX1 Grand Prix Race 1 at 1:10 pm; Women’s World Championship Race 2 at 2:10 pm; MX2 Grand Prix Race 2 at 3:03 pm; MX1 Grand Prix Race 2 at 4:03 pm (local time).

The Grand Prix will be broadcast live on:

EUROSPORT 2 (Pan Europe) : MX1 Race 1 at 13:00 and Race 2 at 16:00 CET
MOTORS TV (Pan Europe): MX2 Race 1 at 12:00 CET
SPORT ITALIA (Italy): MX2 Race 1 at 12:00 CET
SPORT TV (Portugal): MX2 Race 1 at 12:00 CET
VRT (Belgium): MX1 Race 1 at 13:00 CET
GALAXIE SPORT (Czech Republic): MX2 Race 2 at 15:00 CET
ART (Pan Middle East): MX1 Race 2 at 16:00 CET
SPORT TV (Slovenia): MX2 Race 1 at 12:00 and Race 2 at 15:00 CET
EUROSPORT WORLD (Pan Asia): MX1 Race 1 at 11:00 GMT
MEDIAZONE (Worldwide): MX2 Race 1 at 12:00 and Race 2 at 15:00; MX1 Race 1 at 13:00 and Race 2 at 16:00 CET
TRANS 7 (Indonesia): MX2 Race 1 at 12:00 and Race 2 at 15:00; MX1 Race 1 at 13:00 and Race 2 at 16:00 CET

The Grand Prix will be broadcast delayed on:

EUROSPORT 2 (Pan Europe) : Monday May 19; MX2 Class at 17:00 CET
MOTORS TV (Pan Europe): Sunday May 18; MX2 Race 2 at 15:30 CET
SPORT ITALIA (Italy): Sunday May 18; MX2 Race 2 at 16:30, MX1 Race 1 at 00:00 and Race 2 at 01:00 CET
SPORT TV (Portugal): Sunday May 18; MX2 Race 2 at 17:00 CET
VRT (Belgium): Sunday May 18; MX1 Race 2 Summary at 18:30 CET
EUROSPORT WORLD (Pan Asia): Sunday May 18; MX1 Race 2 at 18:00 and 00:00. Monday May 19; MX2 Class at 18:15. Tuesday May 20; MX2 Class at 06:00 GMT.
AMERICA ONE SPORTS (USA): Second Tuesday after the GP; MX2 Race 2 at 21:00; MX1 Race 2 at 22:00 USA Eastern Time
GAORA: MX2 Race 1 and Race 2; MX1 Race 1 and Race 2; N/A CET




FMI-Federazione Motociclistica Italiana




Information, photos and results are online at, the official website of the FIM Motocross World Championships.