As with every running of the MXoN, plenty of unforeseen issues played a part in the overall scores by riders and nations, with an unlikely winner taking home top honors and the Chamberlain Trophy by a massive margin. At the start Alexandr Tonkov ushered the field into the first turn, but the Russian rider had quick company in Gautier Paulin. The French rider slipped from fourth place to second place in the early laps, and began a fevered pursuit of the Husqvarna-mounted Russian. The pace set pace the two riders on the ever-changing track was impressive and had both at the limits of their skill levels at times, with mistakes striking both at different times. Paulin made a number of pass attempts in the same section of track, and finally one all-out run through the lane helped the Kawasaki rider take the lead.
Once Paulin passed Tonkov, the Russian came under attack from Ryan Dungey. The American rider passed German Max Nagl to take third place, and then spent the rest of the moto pursuing Tonkov. A mistake by Tonkov in a tight corner while navigating through lapped traffic allowed Dungey the chance to slip by, but the time spent dueling with Tonkov allowed Paulin to pull away with the moto win.
Fellow America Jeremy Martin entered the day with broken bones in his right foot, and the injury obviously affected the MX2 rider through the motos. A late-gate pick forced Martin to an outside gate and he began the moto deep in the running order. He spent the duration of the eighteen-lap race fighting for position, and climbed to an eventual eleventh place finish.
Antonio Cairoli of Italy and Jeremy van Horebeek of Belgium carved through the pack simultaneously, and the pair rad as high as sixth and seventh place midway through the moto. Cairoli’s rise came to an abrupt end, however, as he was pitched off of the motorcycle in a fast area of the course. After limping off of the course with an apparent knee injury, the Italian withdrew from the moto. The Belgian, meanwhile, continued on to a fourth place finish.
Great Britain’s Tommy Searle and Shaun Simpson were in prime positions midway through the moto, but engine issues plagued Simpson’s KTM and forced the MXGP rider to coax his motorcycle the finish. The English MX2 rider carried the team for the moto, finishing just between Glenn Coldenhoff of the Netherlands and Dylan Ferrandis of France in the top-ten. These three were the only MX2 riders to crack the top-ten in moto one, with a pass by Ferrandis coming in the final lap.
For just the second time in history, Team France took top honors in the Motocross of Nations and did so with strong performances by all three of its riders. The French trio finished every moto inside the top 10 and were led by top-man Paulin, who won both the MXGP/MX2 and MXGP/Open motos. This consistency carried the team to their second overall victory in the event’s history.
Belgium’s Kevin Strijbos was the other moto winner; he topped the MX2/Open moto. The Belgium's rode well and and at times looked as if they could take home the trophy but that would not be the case. Team USA put in some good rides both Eli Tomac (6-3) and Ryan Dungey (2-11), but first-lap crashes that put them back in the field pretty much ruined their hopes for the overall team win
The final results were as follows:
France: 17 points
Belgium: 27 points
USA: 33 points
Great Britain: 33 points
Germany: 72 points
Italy: 73 points
Switzerland: 74 points
Russia: 75 points
Estonia: 77 points
Netherlands: 80 points