2016 FIM Motocross of Nations
THREE IN A ROW FOR THE “TRICOLORES”
The 70th Motocross of Nations took place in front of an 85’000 crowd at the historic and iconic Maggiora Park circuit north of Milan, Italy, and the traditional season curtain-closer could not have bade farewell to the motocross campaign in a better fashion. Wearing the ‘1, 2, 3’ plates as reigning champions and winners in Latvia in 2014 and so memorably on home turf at Ernee last year, the French squad made up of 2015 FIM MXGP World Champion Romain Febvre, backed up by Gautier Paulin (2015 FIM MXGP runner-up) and Benoit Paturel (3rd in 2016 FIM MX2 World Championship), again lifted the Peter Chamberlain Trophy after a close and dramatic contest that was decided on the last lap of the third and final race.
Maggiora was packed to the rafters for three races that brought the twenty fastest countries together with their three-man teams from an initial entry of thirty-eight. After the superiority of Febvre’s first race win, Italian Tony Cairoli’s 2-2 scorecard that thrilled the crowd, the dice between USA’s Jason Anderson and MX Open class winner Jeffrey Herlings, and Anderson’s bizarre post-race accident, Cooper Webb needed to gather vital points for the Americans but fell with two laps to go. After a resurgent charge by the Dutch and Febvre’s last lap pass on Britain’s Tommy Searle for fourth place, the French were able to celebrate for the third time and only fifteen years after they ‘owned’ the Nations for the very first time. It could not have been much closer.