International motocross makes a welcome return this Sunday, February 28 with the opening round of the Internazionali d’Italia MX at Riola Sardo on the island of Sardinia.
The prestigious Italian series — postponed by a month because of the revised 2021 MXGP calendar — is still on, and will focus on the island for the first two rounds. This should aid the preparation of FIM Motocross World Championship teams and riders.
Internazionali d’Italia – three rounds in three weeks
The Italian international championship is the perfect opportunity for riders and teams to benchmark their pre-season progress as they get ready for the tough MXGP season ahead.
The first round will start on February 28 from Riola (OR) in the now tested and “feared” sandy hell of the Crossdromo Municipale “Le Dune”, then riders and teams will move to Alghero (SS), the capital of the Riviera del Corallo, where on March 7 the riders will return to challenge each other on the technical ups and downs of the “Lazzaretto” track.
The grand finale will be held on the well known sandy track of Città di Mantova, on March 14.
Although we’ll miss a fair few heavy hitters this weekend, the rider line-up is still very strong — certainly enough to wish Sunday would hurry up, already!
There are many official riders and factory teams registered with the series, and some will use the Internazionali d’Italia as their debut. You can see the list of pre-entries at the foot of this page, but don’t expect them all to rock up — every international will have no-shows.
Let’s take a look at some of the key players…
Among those who are lined up at the starting gate of this edition of the Internazionali d’Italia MX, Jorge Prado, will be surely one of the stars of the class, riding the KTM 450 SX-F of the KTM Red Bull Factory Racing Team. The Spaniard, who has only just turned 20, is already a two-time world champion and was starting to look very useful on the 450 before getting injured last year.
He’s my tip for this weekend, which has just cursed him — sorry about that Jorge.
Romain Febvre, who jumped on the Kawasaki a year ago, with whom he seems to be perfectly at ease, will certainly be among the Prado’s toughest opponents.
His team-mate Ivo Monticelli will make his debut in Sardinia on the factory KX450. And Glenn Coldenhoff is another who will make his team debut after moving to the Monster Energy Yamaha MXGP team.
We will need to wait until the Alghero race to see the complete Dutch team at work, with 2020 vice world champion Jeremy Seewer who will compete alongside Ben Watson, making his highly anticipated debut on the 450.
Another pairing in the spotlight for the series is the official Husqvarna factory outfit managed by the IceOne team. Although racing for Arminas Jasikonis is not yet on the cards, after the horrible crash of last year — he’s not yet sure when he’ll return to action — it’s reported that he’ll be there with the team. As too will his team-mate Thomas Kjer Olsen who makes the step up to the big boys class, and we can expect to see the Dane make his 450 debut at Riola.
Jeremy Van Horebeek will be on his brand new Beta 450 managed by the Italian team SDM Corse, as too his team-mate Jimmy Clochet, while Alvin Ostlund will make his debut in MX1 on the Yamaha.
Among the Italians, Alessandro Lupino will make his debut on Team Marchetti’s KTM 450 SX-F and Samuele Bernardini on his brand new Honda.
Michele Cervellin and Henry Jacobi, riding the Honda CRF450R of the Jacky Martens team in 2021, are still waiting to come back racing.
What about Tony Cairoli and Tim Gajser? Cairoli’s debut is still uncertain after knee surgery and reigning champion, Gajser has confirmed he will not race the series — choosing to focus on further training and testing with the team after MXGP delayed the start of the season.
In the 250 class, all eyes will be on Mattia Guadagnini who, riding the KTM 250 SX-F managed by Claudio De Carli’s official KTM Red Bull team, will be racing for the first time on the factory KTM in MX2.
For the Italian, the challenge is against the Yamaha YZ250F factory machine of Jago Geerts and Maxime Renaux and the reigning EMX250 Champion Thibault Benistant.
There’s also a large group of GASGAS riders, led by Alberto Forato, debuting on the MC 250F and managed by the SM Action Yuasa Battery Racing Team. He’ll line up alongside the Norwegian Kevin Horgmo and the young Sicilian Andrea Adamo.
Among the rookies on the 250 four-stroke, the young Swede Max Palsson, riding the KTM 250SX-F of the KTM Beddini Racing Team, will race for the first time in the MX2 class, while Jan Pancar with the KTM Racestore team continues his adventure on the 250.
Also, the Fantic 250 XX two-stroke of the Maddii team with Nicholas Lapucci and Maximilian Spies will be on track, while the Honda of the 114 Motorsport team with the new rider Ruben Fernandez, the young French Axel Louis and British MX2 hope, Joel Rizzi.
The F&H Kawasaki Racing Team will participate only in Mantova, when they will field Mikkel Haarup, Roan Van De Moosdijk and Mathys Boisrame. Tim Edberg will be on track with his Yamaha, as too Pietro Razzini who will debut on the Yamaha managed by Ghidinelli.
The 125cc name list is full as always with many riders registered and many EMX125 top riders will be lined up at the starting gate of the first race of the year.
Ivano Van Erp will be at the starting gate with his Yamaha 125 factory managed by Yamaha Europe MJC. Valerio Lata, team-mate of Alessandro Lupino in the KTM Marchetti Racing team are all set for the series.
The official Fantic bikes are signed up with Hakon Osterhagen and Matteo Luigi Russi, as well as many other Italians, like Ferruccio Zanchi, Edoardo Volpicelli, Samuele Pulvirenti, Fabio Massimo Palombini, Andrea Rossi, Daniel Gimm and many others — all ready to crowd the Riola Sardo starting grid.
Sadly, due to the current public health situation, there will be no fans in attendance to watch some of the world’s best motocross pilots bang bars around the sandy circuit.
How to watch
Thankfully, organisers have found a way to make the EICMA series happen, which includes access to live streaming of each of the three rounds, which can be purchased for only €5.49/£4.99. Live streaming starts Sunday, February 28 at 12:15 UTC.
In previous years, live streaming was available free of charge, but unless your Italian language skills were up to a high standard, you had to tune out the live blow-by-blow account and just enjoy the on-track action. Although the live stream is no longer free, you do get a choice of either Italian or English commentary this year. That’s super cool and I know which option I’ll be going with!
And seriously, you should consider dropping a small amount of readies on this too. It’s tough times for everyone right now and motocross is certainly not immune from financial strains. If you can, give it a helping hand.
Riola Sardo Timetable
All times UTC:
– 12:20 MX2
– 13:15 MX1
– 14.05 125 (2nd moto)
– 14.50 SUPERCAPIONE (BEST MX1 AND MX2)
Riola Sardo 125 rider entries – International Italian MX 2021
|3||LATA VALERIO||125||KTM||125 2T|
|6||DI CRESCENZO GIORGIO||125||KTM||125 2T|
|7||ZANCHI FERRUCCIO||125||YAMAHA||125 2T|
|8||VIANO ANDREA||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|21||MARIANI NATHAN||125||KTM||125 2T|
|25||SADOVSCHI ALESSANDRO||125||KTM||125 2T|
|37||CHANTON LEVI||125||KTM||125 2T|
|66||RAMPOLDI JACOPO||125||KTM||125 2T|
|70||KEES VALENTIN||125||KTM||125 2T|
|71||BENNATI MORGAN||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|73||TAGLIOLI LORENZO||125||KTM||125 2T|
|75||DE SANCTIS MATTEO||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|79||SALVINI NICOLA||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|88||RUSSI MATTEO LUIGI||125||FANTIC MOTOR||125 2T|
|94||DE RISI EMILIANO||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|100||VAN DEN BOSSE DANNY||125||KTM||125 2T|
|123||PEKLAJ JAKA||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|129||MAGGIORA NICCOLO`||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|146||BRANDINI DAVIDE||125||KTM||125 2T|
|179||RAUSOV ARTEMY||125||KTM||125 2T|
|184||KOWALSKI JAKUB||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|191||DELLA VALLE DAVIDE||125||KTM||125 2T|
|199||BATTISTONI GIORDANO||125||KTM||125 2T|
|204||VOLPICELLI EDOARDO||125||KTM||125 2T|
|212||PULVIRENTI ALFIO SAMUELE||125||KTM||125 2T|
|225||SBARAGLIA VALERIO||125||YAMAHA||125 2T|
|235||MESSINA ANDREA ENZO||125||KTM||125 2T|
|237||BARBIERI GABRIELE||125||KTM||125 2T|
|304||MAZZANTINI TIBERIO||125||KTM||125 2T|
|312||OSTERHAGEN HAKON||125||FANTIC||125 2T|
|321||CRISTOFORI NICOLA||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|329||SCOLLO MAURIZIO||125||YAMAHA||125 2T|
|330||GIMM DANIEL||125||YAMAHA||125 2T|
|336||AGLIETTI LORENZO||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|337||BRIZIO HOLIVER||125||KTM||125 2T|
|399||LADINI ALBERTO||125||GASGAS||125 2T|
|420||ROSSI ANDREA||125||KTM||125 2T|
|426||FERRIGATO LORENZO||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|428||OBENLAND HENRY||125||KTM||125 2T|
|432||VAN ERP IVANO||125||YAMAHA||125 2T|
|440||BRILLI ANDREA||125||KTM||125 2T|
|480||HINDERSON KASIMIR||125||GASGAS||125 2T|
|609||PALOMBINI FABIO MASSIMO||125||KTM||125 2T|
|666||OLDANI RICCARDO||125||HUSQVARNA||125 2T|
|669||RUFFINI LUCA||125||KTM||125 2T|
|777||ARTHO FABIO||125||KTM||125 2T|
Riola Sardo MX2 rider entries – International Italian MX 2021
|2||TUANI FEDERICO||MX2||HUSQVARNA||250 2T|
|7||SPIES MAXIMILIAN||MX2||FANTIC||250 4T|
|8||FACCA ALESSANDRO||MX2||KAWASAKI||250 4T|
|12||PUCCINELLI MATTEO||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|18||ANGELI LEONARDO JUNIOR||MX2||TM||250 4T|
|22||GIUZIO RAFFAELE MICHAEL||MX2||HUSQVARNA||250 4T|
|23||SARASSO TOMMASO||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|24||HORGMO KEVIN||MX2||GASGAS||250 4T|
|26||EDBERG TIM||MX2||YAMAHA||250 4T|
|49||DUSI MATTIA||MX2||YAMAHA||250 4T|
|50||LUGANA PAOLO||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|56||CORTI LORENZO||MX2||HUSQVARNA||250 4T|
|64||CIABATTI LORENZO||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|69||OLSSON FILIP||MX2||HUSQVARNA||250 4T|
|70||FERNANDEZ GARCIA RUBEN||MX2||HONDA||250 4T|
|74||VALERI ALESSANDRO||MX2||GASGAS||250 4T|
|80||ADAMO ANDREA||MX2||GASGAS||250 4T|
|86||DEL COCO MATTEO||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|88||SAVIOLI RAMON||MX2||250 2T|
|93||GEERTS JAGO||MX2||YAMAHA||250 4T|
|100||ORIOL OLIVER VILAR||MX2||YAMAHA||250 4T|
|101||GUADAGNINI MATTIA||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|115||RONCOLI ANDREA||MX2||GASGAS||250 4T|
|198||BENISTANT THIBAULT||MX2||YAMAHA||250 4T|
|209||CENERELLI GIANMARCO||MX2||HUSQVARNA||250 4T|
|211||LAPUCCI NICHOLAS||MX2||FANTIC||250 2T|
|212||ZAMPINO DAVIDE||MX2||GASGAS||250 4T|
|223||TROPEPE GIUSEPPE||MX2||HUSQVARNA||250 4T|
|228||SCUTERI EMILIO||MX2||HONDA||250 4T|
|237||RAMELLA XYLIAN||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|242||KUCHEROV NIKITA||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|249||CALUGI DARIO||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|253||PANCAR JAN||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|270||BARBAGLIA EUGENIO ANGELO ETTORE||MX2||GASGAS||250 4T|
|281||NICOLI RICCARDO||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|301||ARANGIO FEBBO GIUSEPPE||MX2||HUSQVARNA||250 4T|
|303||FORATO ALBERTO||MX2||GASGAS||250 4T|
|333||CASADEI SAMUELE||MX2||GASGAS||250 4T|
|344||RAZZINI PIETRO||MX2||YAMAHA||250 4T|
|443||VESTERINEN MATIAS||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|489||WALVOORT JENS||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|499||ALBERIO EMANUELE||MX2||HUSQVARNA||250 4T|
|532||PILLER CONSTANTIN||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|568||PALSSON MAX||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|717||WAGENKNECHT JAN||MX2||HUSQVARNA||250 4T|
|766||SANDNER MICHAEL||MX2||KTM||250 4T|
|838||ERMINI PAOLO||MX2||HUSQVARNA||250 2T|
|912||RIZZI JOEL LLOYD||MX2||HONDA||250 4T|
|931||ZANOTTI ANDREA||MX2||TM||250 4T|
|959||RENAUX MAXIME||MX2||YAMAHA||250 4T|
Riola Sardo MX1 rider entries – International Italian MX 2021
|3||FEBVRE ROMAIN||MX1||KAWASAKI||450 4T|
|19||OLSEN THOMAS KJER||MX1||HUSQVARNA||450 4T|
|43||DE BORTOLI DAVIDE||MX1||HONDA||450 4T|
|61||PRADO GARCIA JORGE||MX1||KTM||450 4T|
|76||ANSELMI MARCO||MX1||KTM||450 4T|
|77||LUPINO ALESSANDRO||MX1||KTM||450 4T|
|89||VAN HOREBEEK JEREMY||MX1||BETA||450 4T|
|114||SALINA PIETRO||MX1||FANTIC||450 4T|
|123||BERNARDINI SAMUELE||MX1||HONDA||450 4T|
|126||KOCH TOM||MX1||KTM||450 4T|
|128||MONTICELLI IVO||MX1||KAWASAKI||450 4T|
|161||OSTLUND ALVIN||MX1||YAMAHA||450 4T|
|226||DI MARZIANTONIO GIANLUCA||MX1||KTM||450 4T|
|259||COLDENHOFF GLENN||MX1||YAMAHA||450 4T|
|520||CLOCHET JIMMY||MX1||BETA||450 4T|
|859||PETER VINCENT||MX1||KTM||450 4T|
|860||LA SCALA ANDREA||MX1||GASGAS||450 4T|
|938||BICALHO SALA RODOLFO||MX1||KTM||250 2T|
|949||CONTESSI ALESSANDRO||MX1||KAWASAKI||450 4T|