Nancy van der Ven: It Seems I had to have gotten stuck to not get disqualified

The Indonesian WMX Grand Prix turned into a farce for No Fear Yamaha rider Nancy van der Ven. Nancy won the GP on the track, but was disqualified from one heat for apparently having cut a part of the track.

Due to inclement weather on Saturday, the proceedings were limited to a qualifying session and the first heat. Nancy qualified second, only 0.5 sec slower than Courtney Duncan, and 5 seconds ahead of the rest of the field.

The lady from Vlissingen took the holeshot in heat one. She rode constantly, and kept the lead throughout the race. Riding like a pro through the deep ruts, Nancy built up a lead of more than two minutes. ” It was a great race, but I got a bit anxious later on in the heat, because I could not read my pitboard any more, and had no idea of how big my lead was,” she remarked.

Track conditions were if anything even worse in race two. Nancy looked set to capture the holeshot again, but a mistake in the first corner cost her a few spots. Coming back form fifth position, Nancy started making progress after a few laps, enough to give her the overall victory. She went into the clinch with Livia Lancelot for third spot in the race, but in a bizarre last lap, Nancy crashed twice. Mindful of the rules, she took care to decline outside help and freed the bike from the mud on her own power on both occasions. Nancy continued in third spot, and held the virtual GP victory in hand. On the ramp of a jump she lost control over the bike again, and landed next to the track. Nancy was dead tired, but determined to finish the race. She had to circumvent a huge mud pool to get on the track again, but despite all of these hassles, she still crossed the line third. At the finish, though, disappointment befell her. She heard that she had been disqualified for cutting part of the track, where she had no other option of rejoining the track.

” I am throughly disappointed. I crashed twice on the last lap, and got my bike free on my own power. The bike felt like it weighed 150kg with all the mud. I asked the marshals not to help me, because I am aware of the rules. With my last crash, I simply had to ride around the mud pool. I know for sure that if I had tried to ride through it, I would have gotten stuck. When we heard about the disqualification, we lodged two official protests, but both were declined. The official line was that if I had gotten stuck in the mud and then rode around it, I would not have been disqualified, but because I didn’t try, they DQ’d me. I am gutted with this outcome, but will take strength from this,” she remarked after the race.

Because her points from the second race were scrapped, Nancy dropped to tenth in the overall results. She will be bent on revenge at the second round of the series on 14 and 15 April at Arco di Trento in Italy.

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