Team Suzuki Press Office – May 28.
Jeremy Seewer – 2-3 for 3rd
Hunter Lawrence – 5-4 for 4th
Bas Vaessen – 32-10 for 14th
Jeremy Seewer put his Suzuki RM-Z250 on the podium once again after his two-three moto scores at the MXGP of France, in Ernee. He grabbed good starts and put pressure on the leaders in both his motos and leaves the hillside track with third overall.
Team mate Hunter Lawrence also backed up his second overall in Germany with a fourth overall here, which could have been even better had his gear shifter not snapped off in one of the deep ruts that littered the track. Still, he brought the bike home safely for fifth place, which he then backed up with a solid fourth in the second moto. Bas Vaessen also put in his best moto score of the season with a 10th place in the second moto, after a rock destroyed his chain in the first one when he was running in a good position.
Seewer had this to say about his third-place performance: “Two good races for the championship, I did what I had to do more or less. I would have loved to have got a couple more points, especially in that first moto when I struggled a little with some mistakes that cost me the ability to pass Pauls Jonass. Then I had to fight with Benoit Paturel the rest of the race because of that. I didn’t feel perfect, but I had good starts on my RM-Z250 and that was important on this track. I was really going for the holeshot in that second moto but Paturel came in hot in that first turn so I had to slow a bit or we both would have crashed. I got into third quickly and then it was just a drag race to the finish, we pulled away so far from the rest of the field. All three of us gave all we had and there really just wasn’t a spot on the track to make a pass as we were all so evenly matched. The season is still long, we lost a few points but we won’t give up and keep fighting until the end.”
While Seewer was pushing hard in both motos, Lawrence ended up on his own for large portions of both races, battling with himself to keep concentration and continue his good run of results that have seen him go four-three-five-four in the last four motos. “I was off to a really good start in the first moto, top seven round the first bend before making some quick passes and finding myself in third place. It took me a couple of laps to get going but then I started to click off some good lap times and closed up a bit on the two riders in front. Unfortunately, on the sixth lap I ran into a problem when my gear shifter got snapped off in a rut and I had to ride the rest of the moto in second gear. As bad as that was, I was still riding ok and was able to finish fifth.
“In the second moto I didn’t get the best start but quickly got through the pack into fourth but when I got there, Jeremy Seewer, Pauls Jonass and Benoit Paturel had long gone. I just had to ride my own race, which is quite difficult actually as I had no one around me to gauge my speed on or pressure me. Still, I came home in fourth for fourth overall and a lot of positives from the weekend.”
For Vaessen, it was a weekend of improvement, as he got better every time he went out on the track. “The track was completely different from yesterday, and in the first moto after improving some stuff I got a really good start. I was up front with the guys but then a stone came into my chain and it broke everything and took the DNF. I didn’t get such a good start in the second moto but still came out ok. Then I put on a good bunch of laps, kept my speed up, chose some good lines and rode my way to a 10th place finish. I had some good battles along the way and it was nice to get that top-10 finish in the end.”
Team Manager Stefan Everts said: “Overall it was a third place for Jeremy, but it is tough to lose those five points in the championship. He did all he could though and all three guys were riding extremely well and extremely fast. It was very difficult to make the difference necessary on this track. Still, we could all see that he tried everything to make the pass and that’s important too. He gave up in either race, trying right until the end.
“Hunter rode really well all weekend, even on Saturday which has been a weakness in previous rounds. In the first moto he could have got that third place but unfortunately that gear shifter got snapped off and he had to settle for fifth. He rode smart to keep the bike going and can be proud of the effort with a handicap like that. The second moto was a strange one because by the time he’d fought through to fourth, the top three were gone so he was just all alone. Fourth was all he could do. Overall it was a great performance and result for Hunter, backing up last weekend and proving it wasn’t a one-off. His confidence is growing and I think we can expect a lot more from him in the rest of the season.
“Even Bas proved today that he can ride difficult tracks like this, he couldn’t find his confidence earlier on in the weekend but he kept trying and was rewarded with a 10th place finish. He was fighting hard and it’s important that he kept improving over the course of the weekend.”
Lithuanian Suzuki World MXGP rider Arminas Jasikonis put his RM-Z450WS inside the top-10 in the first moto, on his way to 12th overall at what was an extremely difficult MXGP of France today. The hillside track in Ernee provided the riders with a real challenge as slippery hard-pack was mixed in with some deep ruts which made sure the riders had no chance to relax in either of the two motos.
Jasikonis had this to say about his performance: “It’s been a tough weekend with all the racing. I didn’t get a great start in the first moto and finished 10th. I couldn’t find anywhere to pass Max Anstie, but despite that, I was reasonably happy with the result. It would have been great if I could have got maybe one or two more places, but that was a struggle all weekend, finding good places to pass riders. In the second race, I got a good jump and was around the first corner in third I think, but I didn’t quite reach the holeshot line and crashed out. Lots of riders rode over me, so it changed from good to bad in a very short space of time. I fought through the field from near the back and felt I was doing ok, but then made another mistake to finish up in 17th position.”
“AJ had a good Saturday, he was happy with his riding and I was as well,” said General Manager Stefan Everts. “However, in the first moto he had a bad start and although he was fighting, he finished in 10th position. I don’t think he could have done too much better than that, if you look how tough the competition was in the MXGP class.
The Suzuki World team now have a weekend off from the world championship calendar, before resuming at a brand new round in Orlyonok, Russia on June 9th and 10th.