Confirmed: JM Honda Racing announce 2021 rider line up
JM Honda Racing is proud to announce a completely new and exciting rider duo for 2021. Former junior world champion Henry Jacobi and Michele Cervellin will be lining up on the brand new Honda CRF450R for their second season in MXGP.
Henry Jacobi captured two MX2 podiums and a strong fifth overall in 2019 before moving up to the premier class. The hard-charging 24-year old German rode to a strong MXGP debut in Matterley Basin where he finished 9th but injuries kept him from realising his full potential.
Known for his strong work ethic and determination Jacobi still recorded a promising 8th place moto finish at Mantova 1 and two 11th overall placements. With a good winter preparation the 2018 ADAC MX Masters champion should be capable of creating some surprises and challenging the MXGP establishment.
Italy’s Michele Cervellin (24) returns to Honda after spending two years in the MX2 world championship on the CRF250R. The double European SX and seven-time Italian champion has made a name for himself with his impressively smooth style and bike control.
After a string of top-5 results and a career best seventh in MX2 two years ago “Micky” adapted quickly to the bigger bike in what was his rookie season in the MXGP class. Cervellin showed flashes of his ability and ran top-10 pace at several rounds. Due to a big getoff in Faenza Michele’s progress was unfortunately halted.
The 2021 MXGP Motocross World Championships will begin at Muscat, Oman on April 3.
Henry Jacobi: “It’s been a very busy and also quite stressful year for everyone in the motocross world championship. However this is an amazing way to cap off the season for me! I’m really looking forward to start working with the JM Honda Racing crew. I’m sure to be part of a really good team and it will be cool to tap into all the know-how that Jacky (Martens) has. From the bike to the parts and the support around me I will have everything at my disposal to get good results. When I was on Husqvarna I was already looking up to Jacky because he ran the factory team in MX2 and I wanted to get on that program. Like we all know that didn’t happen, but now I still get the opportunity to work with him and the JM Honda Racing team!”
Michele Cervellin: “I’m really, really happy with this deal! JM Honda Racing will give me a great opportunity to grow as a rider because I will move to Belgium to work closely with Jacky Martens and the team. To take the next step in my career with such a good team is super motivating, I can not wait to start working for the new season! Of course it’s also nice to be back with Honda. I was on Honda bikes for ten years, I began on the CRF150R and made my way through the ranks with the brand. Especially now with the awesome new CRF450R the timing could not have been better to rejoin Honda.”
Jacky Martens, team manager: “We’re super pleased with our rider line-up for 2021 and very excited about our technical package based on the all-new CRF450R. Our first year in the MXGP class and all circumstances surrounding the past racing season have been extremely challenging but we’ve proven that the foundation is right. Henry is a very dedicated rider who’s committed to keep improving. He already showed great things in MX2 and there’s no doubt that he can make things happen in MXGP too. As for Michele we’re very keen to provide him with the tools to fully exploit his bike skills. He’s a rider I’ve been following for a while and his first test on the CRF450R was already impressive. To be back on a Honda is like a homecoming for him, for JM Honda he’s the perfect fit to head into the 2021 season!”
Gordon Crockard, Honda off road racing manager: “After the turbulence of 2020, we are delighted to go into 2021 with such promising young riders partnered with JM Racing. When I think of the new CRF450R, it aligns with the JM Honda Racing Team, Henry and Michele in the 450cc MXGP class in many ways, young, fresh, exciting and full of potential. The new riders, with the new bike, in the new season all makes for vibrant energy. I think the MXGP calendar starting point in April is an advantage for our new riders to build development and grow with Jacky and his team. I am very happy and welcome Henry and Michele into our Honda family.”
Words: Tom Jacobs
Pic: Honda Pro Racing/Shot by Bavo