Fourth place for Fernandez to kick-off 2023 MXGP Championship

2023-03-13 02:59
Ruben Fernandez started his Team HRC career with an impressive fourth place finish in the qualifying race of the MXGP of Argentina-Patagonia, giving him seven points as the series now incorporates these race results into the championship standings.

Villa La Angostura is one of the most picturesque tracks in the world and the perfect venue to open this 2023 MXGP World Motocross Championship. Nestled in the Andes Mountain range, the extremely large crowd were also blessed with beautiful weather, giving the riders a nice boost after a cold European winter.

And in what was a solid day all around for Fernandez, the Honda CRF450R rider was fifth in free practice, then sixth in timed practice, before getting a good jump out of the gate and powering his way round the first turn in third place. Putting in consistent laptimes, the #70 kept a strong third place for the majority of the race, before a rider crashed right in front of him, allowing the rider behind to take advantage and pass him with a couple of laps to go.

Still, fourth is a great start, in what is his Team HRC debut and he will take a lot of positives into tomorrow’s two main motos. Like previous years, the day will start with a warm-up, before the two races which will decide the GP overall. However, the Sunday points, will then be added to the points from today’s qualification race to decide the championship standings.

Ruben Fernandez 70

I am very pleased with how today went. I love coming here, and hoped it would be a good day, but there is a lot of work that goes into these events and I am glad that I was able to show everyone my level right away. Right away, we had a good bike setup and that is very important here because it is such a fast track, that you need to get it right otherwise one second can mean a lot of positions. Fifth in free practice and then sixth in timed gave me a good platform and I knew that a strong start would give me a chance. I came out third around the first corner and almost made it into second but in the I settled into a good pace and rode my own race. It was a shame to get passed near the end but overall, a very good day and I am excited to do even better tomorrow.

Ruben Fernandez

Marcus Pereira de Freitas
HRC General Manager - MXGP

We are all very happy with Ruben’s performance. It is never easy to start on a new team, and especially with a big crowd supporting him, he could easily have been nervous, but he was calm and relaxed and just went out and rode really well. The fourth place not only gives him the seven points for the championship, but also fourth gate pick for the two races tomorrow so we are going to work hard to make sure he can go out there and repeat the result from today.

Marcus Pereira de Freitas

Qualifying Race
Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Time/Gap
1 Prado Garcia Jorge 61 SPA Red Bull GasGas Factory Racing 24:48.237
2 Guadagnini Mattia 101 ITA Husqvarna Junior Racing Maddii 0:03.560
3 Renaux Maxime 959 FRA Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team 0:06.119
4 Fernandez Ruben 70 SPA Team HRC - MXGP 0:08.260
5 Febvre Romain 3 FRA Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing 0:18.953
6 Vlaanderen Calvin 10 NDL Gebben Van Venrooy Yamaha Racing 0:23.466

Source: Honda Racing Corporation

Click here to visit our forums to discuss this story