Charli Cannon
Charli Cannon

Australia’s Charli Cannon again made positive steps forward at round three of the Women’s World Motocross Championship in Spain last weekend, finishing in an impressive fourth place on her Yamaha YZ250F.

Cannon returned to Europe after a few weeks of hard work in Australia and determined to improve her riding and results. Landing in Spain in the days prior, she reconnected with the JK Racing Yamaha Team and got down to business.

Her weekend started slowly, being nearly 10 seconds a lap slower than the pacesetters in the first open practice session. While each circuit she goes to is new for her, 10 seconds is a huge gap to make up but she regrouped for the qualifying session and while P8 doesn’t sound sensational, she had reduced the gap to the leaders to three seconds.

As race one got away, Cannon was inside the top 10 and trying to fight her way forward. She was able to capitalise on some mistakes of other riders and pass a few more to move her way to fifth place by the halfway stage. 

As the laps wound down, she came under pressure when the rider behind her started gaining ground. She tried to pick up the pace, but it came unravelled when she was trying to find her way past a lapped rider, only to tangle bars and fall down. She remounted in eighth place and rode to the finish line disappointed with her result.

Race two and Cannon came out swinging. From a top five start, she burst through the field to take the lead in the opening laps. She kept the intensity and increased her lead over the ensuing laps. In her wake were the best female riders in the world.

She put up a huge fight but slowly the chasing pack caught up with her. She wasn’t doing a double jump leading onto the rollers and that was the spot that allowed others to pass. She dropped to second, then to third and then in the closing laps, she went to fourth, which is where she finished. The result in that race was equal to her best so far, but this was far closer to the front and capturing the lead should boost her confidence. 

She earned fourth for the round, a season best so far and now sits alone in fifth place in the championship at the halfway stage.

“I was able to get my best round result and equal my best round result so I’m happy about that,” Cannon said afterwards. “It felt so good getting to the front and I tried to stay focussed and keep doing my laps. I held it as long as I could and ended up in fourth, which was a little disappointing as I really wanted a podium.

“But I’m happy with the progress we made and the JK Racing Yamaha team has been great. Everyone is so supportive, we are starting to gel and know how everyone works.

“I’m competing in Italy this weekend at a national event with the guys, then it’s off to France for another WMX round.

“I also want to thank everyone for their support back in Australia. I see and read all the messages and it’s really flattering to have so many people interested in my racing. Let’s aim for the podium in France and see if we can make that happen,” Cannon said.

Charli Cannon WMX
Charli Cannon WMX