Tim Gajser showed his much-improved sand riding skills at Valkenswaard, going seven-two for third overall in what was his third podium overall in a row. The CRF450RW rider had second gate pick and with two good starts, he was in a great position to challenge for wins. However a mistake in the first race whilst in third place cost him any chance of that, as he had to regroup and pass a number of riders to get back to seventh place. In race two, he was once again in the hunt for the lead, tracking Antonio Cairoli for the entire moto, but he was just unable to find his way past the Italian.
In what was his home GP, Brian Bogers had his best result of the season, with a 12th place in the first moto. The Dutch rider felt comfortable all weekend in the sandy conditions and it showed as he came so close to breaking into the top 10. Unfortunately a bike issue in the second moto, caused by a collision with another rider, meant that Bogers wasn’t able to improve upon that result as he had to pull out of the race. It was a disappointing end, but still a move in the right direction for #189 and he now heads to Italy with a boost in confidence that the top guys are within reach.
Honda SR Motoblouz rider Jeremy van Horebeek just missed out on his second podium overall of the season, coming in fourth, but tying on points with Gajser. Although the Belgian’s five-three results weren’t quite enough to land him on the podium, he can still be pleased to once again be challenging at the front of this highly competitive MXGP field.
The picturesque Pietramurata track is the venue next weekend for the MXGP of Trentino, where a hard-pack, stony surface awaits Team HRC for the fourth round of the 2019 motocross world championships.
Team HRC’s Calvin Vlaanderen finished fourth for the third GP in succession, as once again he missed out on the podium spot, despite tying on points with the rider in third. Riding in front of his home crowd at the MXGP of the Netherlands, Vlaanderen, who lives five minutes away from the Valkenswaard track tried his hardest to break onto the podium and with less than a lap remaining, he looked to have secured that spot. However a pass by another rider elsewhere on the track meant that he dropped to fourth, making it a disappointing end to a tough weekend of racing.
Coming from a start turn crash in qualification all the way back to 14th, the CRF250RW rider also proved he had the speed in today’s races with his pair of fourth place finishes. These results also maintains his consistent run of performances that has seen him score 36, 35 and now 36 in the three rounds of the series so far. However next weekend, he’ll be hoping to score even more, and get a well-deserved spot on the podium when the championship heads to Italy for the MXGP of Trentino on April 6-7.
Mitchell Evans (Team Honda 114 Motorsports) and Brent van Doninck (Redmoto Assomotor Honda) both challenged the top 10 positions in the second moto, eventually finishing 10th and 11th respectively. For van Doninck, it was a good return to racing after missing the British GP through injury, while Evans can also be happy that he getting back to the speed that saw him get onto the podium in Argentina.
Tim Gajser 243
I’m quite happy to finish on the podium again. I’m just a little bit disappointed with the first race. I made a mistake and finished seventh, but I’m trying to learn as much as possible from these mistakes so I don’t make them in the future. The second race was good though. My speed was good, my start was good. We were really close to the front and the pace was high so overall I’m quite happy and I’m really looking forward to next weekend in Arco di Trento. A huge thanks to everyone in the team, they did an amazing job with the bike and I felt comfortable on it in both the motos.
Brian Bogers 5
The first race went pretty well. I had an okay start, around 11th and I saw that on the pit board so I really tried to push to get inside the top 10. Maybe I pushed too hard to make that happen, and I ended up riding too tight and I couldn’t push anymore. I finished 12th and I was very happy with that, and it was a nice to see my work paying off. In the second race, my start wasn’t so good and I got hit by another rider but I still managed to get up to 14th place. Unfortunately though, the impact with the other rider caused some damage to the bike and I wasn’t able to finish the race. It’s a shame but this is motocross and I must put it behind me and move onto Trentino next weekend.
Calvin Vlaanderen 10
It was two really long tough motos today, to be honest. Obviously having 14th place gate pick didn’t make things easy for me, and in the first race I didn’t have the best start. The first few laps I was carving through the field, making passes but I knew it was going to be a long race so I tried to save my energy to push at the end. That’s what I did and I got up to fourth, which I was quite happy with. In the second moto I got a better start, around sixth or seventh before making a couple of passes to get into fifth. I stayed there for a lot of the moto before I could finally make a move to finish fourth. This gave me four-four results for fourth overall, my third time in a row and the second time this season I had the same points as the person in third. It’s disappointing to be so close and miss out on the podium but at the same time its continued motivation because I know I need to be better than fourth.