The 2018 MXGP season has completed its first pair of events in the beautiful Patagonia Argentina. Taking place early Friday afternoon was the opening press conference for the new season. This press conference gave important info to both national and international media, a handful of riders, as well as several teams.
Youthstream proudly shared interesting and impressive statistics from the 2017 season which showed the growth that the world championship has achieved. Digital media was highlighted as an important tool for its role in the MXGP championship’s continued growth and success along with the expanded television coverage for the upcoming season.
Taking the stage was Youthstream Vice President, Mr. David Luongo who was joined by FIM/CMS Director, Mr. Tony Skillington, Local Organizer, Mr. David Eli, and Major of Villa La Angostura, Mr. Gullermo Caruso alongside some of the biggest names for this year’s racing season: Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antonio Cairoli and Jeffrey Herlings, Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP’s Romain Febvre, Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team’s Clement Desalle, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Gautier Paulin, TM Racing’s Max Nagl, and Team HRC’s Calvin Vlaanderen.
Mr. David Luongo: “First, I wish all a warm welcome to Argentina and to the new season. We are very happy to be here in the hot and beautiful landscape of Argentina and it is always a great pleasure to be at this race because the organization is state of the art and I want to thank David Eli for the work he does here because this is one of the best races of the season globally and for sure one of the best oversea events we ever have in the history of motocross. The series is really global today with 19 races plus the Monster Energy FIM Motocross of Nations, we touch many continents and we are in the best markets in Europe. We don’t have big novelties this year, it is really to deliver the best service possible, to continue to improve the tracks, to improve the preparation, and to improve the security. I wish good luck to all the riders here, we have now, without any doubt, the premier off road series in the world, you are all so talented and for sure you will deliver a great show this weekend.”
Mr. Tony Skillington: “First of all I would like to acknowledge the great work and collaboration that has taken place between Youthstream, over many years, and the FIM. Indeed the FIM’s relationship with our promoter, in this case Youthstream, I would describe as being the strongest and best collaboration that exist within the FIM. I would like to wish all the riders who have made this their profession a very good weekend and a very good season.”
Mr. David Eli: “We are very glad to be here in a new year and we hope that you all enjoy not only being here in this place but also all that Villa La Angostura has to offer. I want to thank Youthstream especially because they have trusted us again and given us the first round of the new championship. For those who are here for the first time I wish you enjoy the competition and the landscape.”
Mr. Gullermo Caruso: “Villa La Angostura has a great passion for this sport, all the people here receive everyone with warmth and they love this sport already in its fourth edition here. Every year we are very anxious and we expect you to come here but at the same time we make great efforts to generate the best conditions to receive you here.”
The riders then finished out the press conference talking about their winter training and expectations for the 2018 season with these statements:
Antonio Cairoli: “I want to congratulate Youthstream who have developed such a great package for people to see and follow us, I am really happy about this. Being here in Argentina for me is unbelievable, I really have a lot of fans in South America, and for me as the first race of the season this weather is perfect.”
Jeffrey Herlings: “Last year we had some issues coming into the season with the hand and now I am feeling much better. I had some good preparation races, I’m feeling strong and good with team, Red Bull KTM have done an awesome job, so I’m so happy on the bike and with the crew I’m working with. We should not forget to mention Youthstream and the FIM for the great job they do for us with the coverage and thanks to those guys we can do what we love to do each and every day. We have high expectations for this season, we definitely want to do our best, but that is all we can do. It is going to be a 19 round series. I’m just going to do my best every weekend to go out and we will see who come out on top at the end of the year.”
Romain Febvre: “I am happy to be here and happy to start the new season here, I really like the track and the past years I really enjoyed both the place and the track. I’m really happy to start the season healthy and with good ambition.”
Clement Desalle: “I start this season with the same goal, to do the best possible every weekend and get the best result. We did a great job with team during the winter, we worked really hard on both myself and the bike. We have a good set up and happy to be here and to start to race.”
Gautier Paulin: “It feels good to start the season finally. We got out of the winter healthy and I’m really happy with Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing for their work over the winter. We got a new bike and the bike is working awesome, we have spent a lot of hours testing and making it good. I am happy to start the season here in Argentina as the track looks really good. Anyhow I’m feeling good, healthy, and we will make the best of each weekend but I’m really happy to be behind the gate.”
Max Nagl: “I have great memories on this track coming from 2015, it is a really nice place. All the rider or I think that for a lot of riders this is their favorite track, it is really wide and it fast, the ground is great even as we expect some rain for Sunday it won’t be an issue.”
Calvin Vlaanderen: “I am obviously looking forward to the first gate drop this weekend, it has been a good off season. Working with the new team, Factory Honda, it’s been good so far, I am really feeling well with the bike and with the team, it feels like family already. Hopefully it is going to be a good weekend, I’m going to do my best and it is important to stay smart, it’s a long season and I will hopefully be there every weekend to reach the top at the end.”
Later Friday afternoon another event was held in the neighboring city center of Villa La Angostura where the riders were introduced to fans following live music on stage.
Directly after the presentation an autograph session took place with Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antonio Cairoli, Jeffrey Herlings, Jorge Prado, Pauls Jonass, and Glenn Coldenhoff, Monster Energy Kawasaki Factory Racing’s Clement Desalle and Julien Lieber, Bike IT DRT Kawasaki’s Tommy Searle and Darian Sanayei, Team HRC’s Calvin Vlaanderen, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Max Anstie, Thomas Kjer Olsen and Thomas Covington, Wilvo Yamaha MXGP’s Jeremy Seewer and Shaun Simpson, Kemea Yamaha Official MX2 Team’s Vsevolod Brylyakov, Ben Watson, and Jago Geerts, TM Racing’s Max Nagl and Samuele Bernardini, I Fly JK Racing’s Ivo Monticelli, and F&H Racing’s Adam Sterry and Jed Beaton, Team Martin Racing Honda’s Michele Cervellin alongside the many enthusiastic and loving Argentinian fans.
Friday’s events has left everyone excited for another season of non-stop motocross racing. Be sure to watch the all the races LIVE this weekend on www.mxgp-tv.com
All the photos of the MXGP of Patagonia Argentina will be available HERE
Saturday: MX2 Free Practice 10:45; MXGP Free Practice 11:15; MX2 Time Practice 13:20; MXGP Time Practice 14:00; MX2 Qualifying Race 15:25; MXGP Qualifying Race 16:10.
Sunday: MX2 Warm up 10:25; MXGP Warm up 10:45; MX2 Race 1 12:15; MXGP Race 1 13:15; MX2 Race 2 15:10; MXGP Race 2 16:10.