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The FIM Motocross World Championship series was created in 1957 with a class for motor cycles with a maximum of 500cc capacity; a 250cc class was added five years later and a championship for 125cc machines in 1975.
The FIM Motocross World Championship series was created in 1957 with a class for motor cycles with a maximum of 500cc capacity; a 250cc class was added five years later and a championship for 125cc machines in 1975. As the sport entered the 21st century it became clear that technical development required a modification of the traditional class structure and since the 2003 season the premier series has been open to two-stroke motor cycles with an engine size between 176cc and 250cc or four-strokes between 291cc and 450cc; within a couple of years the four-stroke motorcycles established their pre-eminence and it is now rare for a two-stroke machine to participate. Riders contest two races (motos), each of 30 minutes plus two laps duration, and the first 20 finishers score points in each. The Grand Prix winner is the rider with the greatest combined points total from the two motos; in the case of a tie the better placing in the final moto is decisive. Riders must be at least 16 years of age.Kawasakis involvement in the FIM Motocross World Championship dates back as far as 1972 when the Swede Olle Pettersson was signed as development rider in the 250cc class and two years later Kawasaki officially entered the 500cc class also with his compatriot Christer Hammargren. After several near-misses Kawasaki finally secured its first world title when Stefan Everts won the 250cc series in 1995, and French teenager Sebastien Tortelli followed this by taking the title three years later.No less than six major manufacturers enter official teams in the premier world series, and Kawasaki is a major player, having finished third in the 2013 manufacturers' standings with three of their riders amongst the first seven in the individual championship.
The FIM MX2 Motocross World Championship was created at the same time as MXGP and is open to two-stroke motorcycles between 101cc and 125cc and four-strokes between 176cc and 250cc, though, as in MX1, four-stroke machines now predominate.
The FIM MX2 Motocross World Championship was created at the same time as MXGP and is open to two-stroke motorcycles between 101cc and 125cc and four-strokes between 176cc and 250cc, though, as in MX1, four-stroke machines now predominate. MX2 effectively replaced the 125cc world series.The smaller capacity bikes are considered ideal for young riders to develop their riding skills and this fact has been acknowledged yet further since 2010 with the introduction of a maximum age limit of 23 years. The minimum age for participants is 15 years of age.Kawasaki, having always been aware of the importance of nurturing new talent, has secured titles with Sebastien Tortelli (1996), Mickael Maschio (2002) and Christophe Pourcel (2006) and remains a prominent force in the series with top three placings in recent years by Steven Frossard and Tommy Searle.