Jeremy Seewer led the way for the Suzuki World MXGP team, taking victory in the MX2 qualification race. Behind him, both Arminas Jasikonis and Hunter Lawrence finished 7th in their MXGP and MX2 races, while Bas Vaessen had bike problems which caused him to have to pull out after a couple of laps. In the EMX250 class, Zach Pichon got off to a great start in his first moto back from a collarbone injury, however another rider ruined his chances of a podium spot when he jumped into the back of the young French rider on the fifth lap.
For a first time venue in the MXGP series, they have done a great job and everyone seems happy with both the facility and the track. “It’s a new place for everyone and I have to say the track layout is awesome,” said Seewer. “It’s pretty natural with uphills, downhills, some nice jumps and the dirt is really special. It’s tacky, but also gets hard quickly. In the race I had a good start on my RM-Z250, almost grabbing the holeshot. I then settled in behind Pauls Jonass but he seemed to have a technical issue so I moved into the lead and ended up winning. It’s good to finally have a good Saturday result because I’ve struggled the last couple of GPs to finish well in qualification but today I could do it and it’s all gone well so far. I hope to do the same tomorrow.”
A few positions behind him was Lawrence who had to come through the field after a mistake in the first 20 metres of the race. “I think I was dead last coming into the first turn but after a couple of corners I managed to pass a bunch of guys and move inside the top 20. With a bit more pushing and shoving on the first lap, I managed to move up to around 10th so I’m pretty happy with how it turned out. I ended the race in seventh and feel good for tomorrow. We have a good position for the gate pick and so now I’ll go back and relax a bit, before coming back tomorrow feeling refreshed. I’m happy with my speed and knowing that I can come through the pack on a track that is difficult to pass on is a good positive.”
Jasikonis also finished seventh in his MXGP qualification race, a good result on a track that was catching out a lot of his fellow competitors. “It’s a nice track, really special with some fast spots and some slow spots. I had a good qualifying race, with quite a good start. I messed it up a little bit in the first corner but it was a good race. It was hard to pass Max Anstie and I had to block him and ended up in seventh place which is quite good. I still need to improve some spots so I can be even better but overall it’s going well and I’m always learning. I have a really good feeling with the RM-Z450WS right now so I’m looking forward to the two races.”
Unfortunately Vaessen’s day was cut short as a technical issue ruled him out of the qualification race after just two laps. “Free practice was good and timed practice was going well but there seemed to be a problem with the bike and I wasn’t able to continue. The team worked really hard to fix the bike in time for the qualification race but after a couple of laps I soon realised that I couldn’t continue and had to pull off the track. It’s a shame but the real races are tomorrow and despite having last gate pick, I feel ok and want to show everyone what I’m capable of.”
In the EMX250 class Pichon returned to the action after missing out in France: “I was feeling really good on the track. I had a great start and was running fourth for the first few laps. I was feeling confident and riding smooth and then some other rider jumped on me and I had a really big crash. After that it was difficult to start the bike again, everything was bent; my handlebar and my levers so I could only finish in 16th position. I also hurt my collarbone a little bit more. I’m really disappointed because I felt so good. I was almost surprised how well I felt, with this being the first race back. Still, I think I can do well here tomorrow and score some more points.”