MXGP tracks seem to have been going backwards recently with the track maintenance crew deciding that big bumps seem to be too dangerous for the best riders in the world.
MXGP used to rarely touch the track over the two days, it helped create the best and most technical motocross riders in the world, who had to think about where to go and how to ride each section, you couldn’t just disengage your brain and just pin it to the next turn.
Back in 2008 at Donnington, team USA staff happened to be walking beside back to the pits after a moto, and they mentioned that they were going to struggle soon because they aren’t used to the tracks getting so rough and being left alone.
Now, eleven years later, MXGP are bizarrely copying a track grooming route that didn’t work in the States. From last year America are seemingly allowing their tracks to get rougher again and they are arguably rougher now than GP tracks despite being a one day format, such is the unnecessary track flattening overnight and in between motos in the world championship.
It also hurts the racing. The track is usually developing nicely by the end of Saturday, but instead of multiple lines being available and smart riders figuring out the best or new lines on Sunday, Sunday’s racing tends to be one lined, wide open racing because the tracks are too smooth. With options only started to develop again in the second half of the final motos of the day, it all appears a little too late,
Yes, safety is important but kickers on jumps and dangerous ruts can still be taken out, however smoothing braking bumps in between GP motos is getting ridiculous, these are the best riders in the world on the best suspension in the world, who train all year for rough tracks.
Jago Geerts mentioned at Valkenswaard he hoped they wouldn’t flatten the track for Sunday, but they did it anyway. His team manager Marnicq Bervoets told us he would have hated it if they smoothed the tracks in his day and even MXGP commentator Paul Malin repeatedly expressed his shock and disapproval all day on Sunday at just how flat and smooth Valkenswaard, saying that they never touched the track from the first lap of practice until the end of the racing in his day.
That’s how it should be, allowing tracks to develop naturally over the weekend and see the who the smartest and fittest riders are by the end, not seeing bumps as a negative on a motocross track.
This isn’t supposed to be MotoGP. MXGP needs to get back to being MXGP.