The first round of the WMX series took place in Valkenswaard and there was a surprise in store.
Heading into the season, Courtney Duncan and Nancy Van de Ven were expected to battle for the title heading into round one. However, at round one it was Amandine Verstappen who went 2-2 to win the overall and take the championship red plate to round two.
Verstappen who finished sixth in the world in 2018 was obviously delighted with how Valkenswaard went for her. “In the first race, I took the holeshot and after I finished second. In the second race, I took a bad start but I worked hard and got back up to second again. I was able to win the overall and take the red plate, I’m really very happy with my weekend”.
Making the move from KTM to Yamaha seems to have been a positive move for Verstappen. “I prefer sand so I liked the track here at Valkenswaard. For Portugal I will work on hard pack to improve and be better. Now I am riding with a Yamaha this season. I prefer the bike because the handling is better, it’s easier around the corners. I really like the bike”.
Coming into the season, Verstappen admits she wanted to be top three but perhaps surprised herself with how round one went. “For this season my expectation was to finish in the top three. Now I have the red plate and championship lead I want to try my best to keep it”, Verstappen commented.
Interview: Andy McKinstry