Mega action in Greece

14.04.2011: The FIM MX3 World Championship is back and what a better way to start than in Megalopolis, a naturally crafted track in the south of Greece. The MX3 riders are revisiting this remarkable circuit after what was a much welcomed return of a Motocross World C

The FIM MX3 World Championship is back and what a better way to start than in Megalopolis, a naturally crafted track in the south of Greece.

The MX3 riders are revisiting this remarkable circuit after what was a much welcomed return of a Motocross World Championship event in May last year.

A Greek Classic

The Megalopolis track has twice been the stage for the 250cc World Championship races and especially in 1998 it meant a last chance for Stefan Everts to win the 250cc title. The Belgium rider crashed while coming downhill on the Greek circuit handing what could have been an eleventh title in his career to a very capable Sebastien Tortelli on the Kawasaki.

Not much has changed on the track’s shape since those days and both MX3 and WMX riders will now have the chance to taste some ‘old-school’ riding on this technical and yet fast track and what a fine place it is: the city of Megalópoli as it is now known –meaning “great city”- is located in a beautiful valley on the Southern Greece and is part of the Western Arcadia region. Surrounded by high mountains and only a 30 minute drive from Tripoli, the Greek motocross track was built on a brown coal mining area giving its dirt a distinctive nature.

Everything has improved for this year’s edition and Megalopolis, according to race organiser Stelios Hristodoulou, is now a ‘revived’ track: “When I designed this track with the Tripoli Motoclub, at the beginning of ’94 and went international after only four years on what came out to be the best 250cc GP of the year, we knew that we had great potential with this venue. The following year we got the 250’s again but we lost all our sponsorship, a small fortune of the invested money and when it also started to rain that was the end of the line for us.”

“Nevertheless, we knew that we had created something special here and I felt that this track needed to reborn for motocross. Last year we decided to do it in a short time and it didn’t go that well as we even had some bad luck with the country’s economical situation; I like to say that we didn’t have a good event but we had very good races! Riders and public liked it so much and it’s with that in mind that we want to go a bit further with this year’s MX3 round”


On the MX3 competitors side there will surely be some surprises coming from the East front as Cyprus and also Greece entered ten riders each. Riding on home soil the young Greek riders will try to get on the same pace of some more experienced MX3 riders and prove a point or two.

No surprise is the long awaited return of Antti Pyrhonen after spending a whole year slowly recovering from an injury sustained in 2009, the experienced Finnish rider is once again back on the charge for the title.

Julien Bill, winner of 2010’s last round in his home country looked promising and the Swiss rider himself is also back on the MX3 Championship together with another Swiss, Christopher Valente.

Martin Zerava, Petr Michalec and Martin Michek represent Czech Republic’s main force and they will be looking to finish on the podium too as well as Dutch Honda rider Ceriel Klein Kromhof.


The WMX class already had a very promising ‘warm-up’ in Sevlievo with Steffi Laier winning both motos with little resistance, insisting that the red plate is still looking good on her KTM. Larissa Papenmeier and Chiara Fontanesi will hopefully be right at the front too as they did in the Bulgarian round. Francesca Nocera finished fourth overall in Sevlievo and will certainly try to get in the fight for the top-three this time around.

From the Netherlands come Marielle De Mol, Britt van der Wekken and Marianne Veenstra; all with much acquired experience in previous Women’s World Championships and they all promise exciting fights between each other for the fastest Dutch. Sara Pettersson from Sweden will be also looking for a better result as she is now the best Swede representative.

2010 MX3 PODIUM:

1. Alex Salvini
2. Carlos Campano
3. Milko Potisek

2010 MX3 POLE: Alex Salvini


Saturday April 16th:
MX3 Free Practice 1 - Group A 10:00; MX3 Free Practice 1 - Group B 10:30; WMX Free Practice 11:00; MX3 Free Practice 2 - Group A 12:30; MX3 Free Practice 2 - Group B 13:00; WMX Pre-Qualifying Practice 13:45; MX3 Qualifying Practice - Group A 15:00; MX3 Qualifying Practice - Group B 15:30; WMX Qualifying Race 16:30;

Sunday April 17th:
WMX Warm up 10:00; MX3 Warm up 10:45; WMX Race 1 12:30; MX3 Race 1 13:30; WMX Race 2 15:30; MX3 Race 2 16:30;

- Nuno Laranjeira-


14.04.2011 / MaP

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