With a magnificent display the two Frenchman truly dominated the Bulgarian GP, taking first and second places in both strenuous motos. The Kawasaki riders took a race victory and a second place a piece; the overall GP victory went to Paulin for the Kawasaki Racing Team though Pourcel recorded an identical points score for Team CP377 Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit.
Both Paulin and Pourcel are contesting the complete MX1 world series for the first time, and their successes were an emotional affair for each of their teams. Team CP377 is a new team this year, whilst the Kawasaki Racing Team has been desperately unlucky with injuries in recent years; Paulin's success was the team's first GP victory since 2008.
The superiority of Kawasaki's KX450F-SR was displayed admirably as both riders moved quickly to the front in both races and neither Paulin nor Pourcel were ever seriously challenged by their rivals. Paulin is now second in the world standings, just nine points from the lead, whilst Pourcel, despite his disappointing display two weeks earlier at the series opener, is already back to fifth in the points.
Xavier Boog of KRT and Sebastien Pourcel of CP377 added to the celebrations by each returning a top six finish, and Boog is now only two points away from placing no less than three Kawasakis in the first six of the championship.
In the MX2 class, Tommy Searle won the second round at Sevlievo in Bulgaria for Team Floride Monster Energy Kawasaki Pro Circuit with Joel Roelants also scoring a moto victory.
The Kawasaki teammates sprinted to the front in the opening moto around the hillside track, moving clear of the opposition at two seconds a lap until leader Searle suddenly lost the use of the front brake and had to slacken his pace. Roelants took over for a clearcut victory with only one rival also able to take advantage of Searle's misfortune.A determined Searle made no mistakes in race two, leading throughout to clinch the overall victory on the day and move to within seven points of the series lead, whilst Roelants overcame a hectic first lap to clinch third place on the podium.
Gautier Paulin: “It's a very emotional day for me to win my first GP for the Kawasaki Racing Team. I knew when I joined them that this was the right team for me and we have all worked hard all winter for this result. Even though I finished second in the first race I rode a little tight, but I felt good, the bike was perfect, and I really enjoyed my riding in the second race.”
Christophe Pourcel: “I knew that I had to get back on the box here after my bad weekend in the Netherlands. We made some changes to the settings of the bike since then as it was actually too powerful for me and I couldn't give my all. And it worked. I got two great starts and was soon able to build a gap in the first race, but Gautier surprised me in the second race. He was quickly five seconds ahead and we had the same speed so I couldn't catch him, but this is a great result for Team CP377.”
Tommy Searle: “My Kawasaki is even faster than last year and I had no problem to take the holeshot in both motos. That always make the races easier and I was unlucky not to have a double win this weekend. We're still not sure how it happened but I lost the front brake in the first race; I had to change my lines and it was difficult on a track with so many steep downhills but I only lost two places and I knew that a win in race two would give me the overall GP victory.”