The 6th round of the FIM Motocross World Championship is upon us for the MXGP of Europe. After last weekend’s amazing and historic racing MXGP, MX2, and EMX250 classes are ready to do it all over again.
While in MXGP and MX2, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antonio Cairoli and Jorge Prado Garcia will go to Valkenswaard with a GP victory in the pocket and the Red Plate holders Team HRC’s Tim Gajser and Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Pauls Jonass are keen to show their supremacy at the MXGP of Europe.
In addition Round 2 of the EMX250 championship will take to Valkenswaard this weekend as well. Simone Furlotti is in the points lead after winning the season opener in Trentino. Furlotti will have to battle with several top level competitors on a circuit that is quite different from the previous. With Morgan Lesiardo, Miro Sihvonen, Karlis Sabulis, and Nick Kouwenberg hot on Furlotti’s heals you can expect some close battles and shifting of the points.
Team HRC’s Tim Gajser had an impressive race 2 in Trentino and so far this season he has shown that he is the one to beat. Gajser has never won in Valkenswaard, his best result here came last year when he reached the 3rd spot overall. The pressure of the points lead shrinking after Cairoli’s win in Trentino may propel the Slovenian to respond and claim his first Valkenswaard win this weekend.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antonio Cairoli is coming into Valkenswaard after an amazing weekend in Trentino. The Italian has won in the GP in Valkenswaard 6 times, 5 of which in the MXGP class. It’s been 2 years though since he has seen the top step of the podium here. Striving to keep momentum from his impressive and historic race in Trentino you can be sure Cairoli will come out ready to fight.
Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team’s Clement Desalle is another rider who has yet to win in Valkenswaard. The Belgian has finished on the podium twice there in the past and will hope to do the same this time. Desalle still sits third in the championship but only 6 points ahead of 4th and 5th.
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Gautier Paulin had some of the fastest laps in Trentino where he finished 5th overall. Paulin won the MXGP of Europe in 2015 and he has what it takes to win this year. Expect the #21 Husqvarna machine impress when the gate drops in Valkenswaard.
Team HRC’s Evgeny Bobryshev has had some strong results this year and narrowly missed the podium in Trentino. The Russian has never finished outside of the top ten in Valkenswaard with his best result being 3rd in 2013. All things considered if he can have two consistent races his speed will put him in the top 5 if not the podium.
Last year’s winner and 2015 MXGP Champion Monster Energy Yamaha Racing Team’s Romain Febvre hasn’t had the season he has wanted and after a disappointing 13th overall last weekend he will be searching for the Valkenswaard form of past years this Sunday.
This weekend will be a home GP for Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jeffrey Herlings. Herlings just had his best 450 result this season during the Race 2 at Trentino finishing 4th. The #84 has never lost a world championship race in Valkenswaard and he hopes to keep it that way by scoring his 8th victory on this track and 1st on a 450 Sunday.
Swiss rider, Wilvo Yamaha MXGP’s, Arnaud Tonus is coming into Valkenswaard with new found confidence and momentum after Trentino, where he reached the podium for his first time ever in the MXGP class
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Max Nagl was on the podium here last year and is still looking for his first one of the season in this ultra competitive class.
Glenn Coldenhoff is another Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider that will be racing at home this weekend. The dutchman has had some terrific starts this year and is now looking to do the same to impress the home fans.
2016 MXGP of Europe MXGP Top 3
MXGP Championship Top Ten: 1. Tim Gajser (SLO, HON), 201 points; 2. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 183 p.; 3. Clement Desalle (BEL, KAW), 151 p.; 4. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, HON), 145 p.; 5. Gautier Paulin (FRA, HUS), 145 p.; 6. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, YAM), 144 p.; 7. Romain Febvre (FRA, YAM), 106 p.; 8. Arnaud Tonus (SUI, YAM), 101 p.; 9. Maximilian Nagl (GER, HUS), 95 p.; 10. Kevin Strijbos (BEL, SUZ), 90 p.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Pauls Jonass is continuing to shine this season finishing on the podium once again in Trentino. The Latvian is accustom to soft soil similar to that of Valkenswaard. Jonass finished second here last year but only to Herlings who is no longer a challenger. Jonass may very well score his first victory in Valkenswaard this weekend.
Team Suzuki World MX2’s Jeremy Seewer lost his points’ lead he had worked so hard for in Trentino. Seewer will look to forget the problems of the past weekend and try to respond by out finishing his main competitor, Pauls Jonass.
LRT KTM’s Julien Lieber is an experienced soft soil rider hailing from Belgium. Lieber last raced here in 2014 and he finished 9th. With multiple podiums under his belt this season he’s striving for his first race win and overall in Valkenswaard.
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Thomas Kjer Olsen rode the best we’ve seen of him in Trentino, he won the qualifying race and he finished fourth overall on Sunday. The former EMX250 Champion will try to learn from the few mistakes of Trentino, which most likely caused him to miss his first podium, and focus on the racing ahead.
Kemea Yamaha Official MX2 Team’s Benoit Paturel was left scratching his head in Trentino where he finished 19th. Paturel has struggled off the start and he is taking the hard route to the top. Last year the French finished 5th in Valkenswaard, he is now 5th in the championship and could really use another top five this weekend’s visit to the starting gate.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jorge Prado Garcia scored his first career victory in Trentino at 16 years old last weekend. The self proclaimed soft track rider will go for 2 wins in a row on the sandy soil of Valkenswaard.
HSF Logistics Motorsport Team’s Brian Bogers and Clavin Vlaanderen are no strangers to this track and they will look to use their experience of racing on this soil and the home fans to their advantage.
2016 MXGP of Europe MX2 Top 3
MX2 Championship Top Ten: 1. Pauls Jonass (LAT, KTM), 192 points; 2. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, SUZ), 183 p.; 3. Julien Lieber (BEL, KTM), 175 p.; 4. Thomas Kjer Olsen (DEN, HUS), 158 p.; 5. Benoit Paturel (FRA, YAM), 147 p.; 6. Brent Van doninck (BEL, YAM), 123 p.; 7. Jorge Prado Garcia (ESP, KTM), 117 p.; 8. Thomas Covington (USA, HUS), 113 p.; 9. Vsevolod Brylyakov (RUS, KAW), 110 p.; 10. Michele Cervellin (ITA, HON), 99 p.
Saturday: EMX125 Group 1 Free/Timed Practice 08:00; EMX125 Group 2 Free/Timed Practice 08:45; EMX250 Group 1 Free/Timed Practice 09:30; EMX250 Group 2 Free/Timed Practice 10:15; MX2 Free Practice 11:45; MXGP Free Practice 12:15; EMX125 Last chance Qualifying Race 13:10; EMX250 Last chance Qualifying Race 13:55; MX2 Time Practice 14:30; MXGP Time Practice 15:00; WMX125 Race 1 15:30; MX2 Qualifying Race 16:25; MXGP Qualifying Race 17:10; EMX250 Race 1 17:55.
Sunday: EMX125 Race 2 09:45; MX2 Warm up 10:25; MXGP Warm up 10:45; EMX250 Race 2 11:30; MX2 Race 1 13:15; MXGP Race 1 14:15; MX2 Race 2 16:10; MXGP Race 2 17:10.