2019 MX2 World Championship Preview: The New Blood
We take a look at some of the new blood that will enter the MX2 World Championship in 2019 – there’s lots of talent who will be looking to impress during the season.
There’s no better place to start than the EMX250 champion, Mathys Boisrame as he makes the step up to the World Championship. The French rider showed some great pace last year and was able to bring home the EMX250 title. However, winning that title doesn’t bring guaranteed results in MX2, just look at Morgan Lesiardo who hasn’t had the same success competing in the World Championship. Boisrame certainly looks to have plenty of potential for the future though.
Last year was a rookie year for Brian Moreau in the EMX250 championship and he continued to improve as the season went on. The BUD Kawasaki rider ended up seventh in the championship and together with his team they’ve decided the MX2 World Championship is the next step for him. Moreau has bags of talent and a lot of speed when he needs it so he could surprise, his strength is hard pack!
It’s not that long ago that Maxime Renaux was battling with Jorge Prado on a 125cc – albeit he’s older than the Spaniard but he still showed signs of a promising future. Since making the move up to the 250cc, injuries haven’t been kind to the Frenchman but he had a solid season last year and will look to build on that. He’s finally got a shot at racing the MX2 World Championship with the SM-Action Yamaha team. He contested a few rounds of the series last year so will know what to expect.
Another Frenchman in the form of Tom Vialle makes the jump up to the MX2 World Championship after signing with Factory KTM. The announcement turned a lot of heads but Vialle has plenty of potential for the future and who knows what he might just do on the factory KTM. He has lots of pressure being a factory rider and that’s something he’s going to have to deal with but it could also be the making of his career.
He only found out a few weeks ago but Mikkel Haarup will race the MX2 World Championship after all. For a while it was looking like he’d stay in the EMX250 series but he’s been so good in pre-season the IceOne Husqvarna team have decided he needs to be in MX2. After the likes of Jorge Prado and Jago Geerts this guy is the next big thing and he’ll be looking to run with some of the best throughout the course of 2019 – he has the talent.
After thinking he might be racing the EMX250 series again, Haarup is just grateful to be heading to Argentina. “They made the decision a few weeks ago but only told me last week so it’s a little bit new for me as well but I am happy with the decision also of course mine. It’s always been the goal to race MX2 this year, I just haven’t been allowed but now I’ve been doing so good during the winter so I’m really happy the work has paid off.”
One of the older guys that’s moving up from EMX250 is Dylan Walsh as he’s 21 years old so because of that he’ll probably have higher expectations than some of the young guns. Walsh had a good season in the EMX250 series last year finishing sixth in the championship. He’s signed a deal with Revo Husqvarna for 2019 and seems to be really happy with how everything is going so he could be in for a good season.
Walsh wants to fight for podiums, “It’s my rookie season but I’m 21 so I’m not expecting to have any rookie mistakes. I’ve put in the work, I’m going to Argentina and I want good results. I want the first one out of the way and then I want to fight for those podiums”.
One of the pleasant surprises in pre-season has to be Mitch Evans who’s came from racing in Australia to the MX2 World Championship. There’s no doubting he’s fast as he finished second in the MX1 series over there behind Dean Ferris and he also showed his speed at the Des Nations. Aussie’s usually need time to adapt to the different kind of tracks in Europe but so far he’s been right on the pace. The 114 Motorsports Honda team will be hoping he can fill Hunter Lawrence’s boots.
After an injury to Darian Sanayei last year, the DRT team drafted in Brazilian, Gustavo Pessoa to contest some rounds towards the end of last year. There’s no doubt that Pessoa was a pleasant surprise for the team as he had 10-15 speed so he’s secured a full season with the team. With a full off-season with the team and now knowing what to expect he might even be better in 2019.
Young Austrian, Roland Edelbacher spent the year racing the ADAC MX Masters series in Germany but did contest one GP last year in Loket where he finished an impressive fifteenth overall. Not bad considering he’s got no GP experience. Tanel Leok has spotted his potential and decided to sign him for the A1M Motorsport but 2019 will be about learning as much as possible.
“This is what I’ve been looking for – a rider who is motivated and isn’t afraid to work. Also, when you look at the results they have been very good. At the MXDN he was good and he did one MX2 round in Loket where he finished 12-15 – this is good for the team. Not many people know him and I think he can make good results”, Leok commented on Edelbacher.
Young Italian, Andrea Zanotti has experience of being in the GP paddock as he contested a number of season’s in the EMX125 class. Last year, Zanotti decided to focus more on the Italian Championship in what was his first season on the 250cc but he did contest some GP’s. Zanotti has a lovely style on the bike and has inked a deal with Marchetti KTM team for the season ahead.
Making the move up from the EMX125 class straight to the World Championship is Petr Polak. The young Czech rider will just take it as a learning year and do the best he can against the best 250cc riders in the world. He has a good team behind him, JD 191 KTM and he’ll just be grateful to be given this opportunity to contest the European rounds of the series.
The Gebben Van Venrooy Kawasaki Racing team usually focus on the MXGP series but this year they’ve decided to retain Marcel Conijn but will give him a shot at racing the World Championship. The Dutch rider will gain experience from his rookie year but he did score a point two years ago when he contested a wildcard round at Assen.
Article: Andy McKinstry
Pics: Scott Dunne