With Tim Gajser winning the last six motos of the season, in the form of his life and taking the red plate, all eyes will be on Tony Cairoli this weekend in the sand of Latvia to see if he can bounce back from two terrible Grand Prix on the hard pack.
This weekend however, while it may not be sand as deep as Lommel, it is certainly a circuit and terrain that suits Cairoli and brings him back into play, but you feel it’s hugely important for the Italian to beat Gajser this weekend with the next couple of races after back on the hard-pack.
And Jeffrey Herlings agrees, telling Geoff Meyer in an interesting interview on MXLarge: “You know, there is one thing you can’t train for, you can’t buy it, and that is self-confidence. The guy (Gajser) is getting so much self-confidence, and I know how that feels, because I had it last year, and when you start winning and keep winning, then it’s hard to beat that. I always say when it is your year, it is your year.”
“You don’t want Gajser to have too much confidence, because I remember Gajser with confidence and with that confidence, he could also win at Lommel,” explained Herlings in an interesting insight into the mindset of riders and how they see their competition. “I don’t know, I hope for KTM and Cairoli he can get his 10th championship, but at the moment, the complete Gajser puzzle is looking strong.
“I think Tony needs to win this weekend, because if he loses, then it will be tough.” ( make sure you read the full interview here.)
Cairoli never usually allows people to get on a run of wins, indeed, Herlings is the only man that’s ever managed that against the nine-time world champion because Cairoli knows just how important confidence and momentum is, he always hits back.
That’s why Latvia is so important, if Gajser wins again, on Cairoli’s style of track, he will only get more confidence. This weekend could be a huge swing in the momentum of the 2019 world championship – Cairoli has to make it happen.