Talking point: Factory KTM hit the jackpot in MX2 – World champions again!
Factory KTM have a very impressive record when it comes to MX2 and winning world championships in that class. Multiple world champions in the class including the likes of Tyla Rattray, Marvin Musquin, Jordi Tixier, Jeffrey Herlings and Tom Vialle over the last two decades. It is very impressive and KTM have made it very hard for other brands to get their hands on the MX2 world title.
It was known quite early before the 2023 season that Liam Everts and Andrea Adamo would be under the Factory KTM awning in what felt like a different feel for the factory team. They usually have one of the hot favourites coming into the new season but it’s no secret that whilst Adamo and Everts are very good riders it was both their first seasons as a full factory rider. It was no real secret that coming into the season the likes of Geerts and Benistant were the title favourites.
Dirk Gruebel told us in July last year that he didn’t think Factory KTM would challenge for the world title in 2023.
“I don’t think we go for the title next year still with these youngsters it’s a building year and sometimes you need to have that. We go for that, it’s a nice challenge again and take it from there”. Dirk, you were wrong! But there was no doubt that losing Tom Vialle was going to be a blow to the team – a proven winner and even if he hadn’t of gone to USA, he’d have moved up to MXGP. It would have been hard for any team to lose him but as so often Factory KTM got it right.
Obviously, Jago Geerts started the season on fire but then had bad luck – I don’t think it can be denied that a 100% fully fit Geerts had the edge on the rest but Andrea Adamo deserves a lot of credit. The Italian stepped up when it mattered and had some superb rides this year. He might not have won at the French GP but his ride in the second moto at a very rough hard pack, Villars sous Ecot, coming from virtually last all the way to third showed just how much pace the Italian has.
He might not have won much this year only winning two GP’s and four moto wins but eleven podiums is very, very consistent. He actually won the title similar fashion to Jorge Prado in MXGP where consistency was key in the title charge.
Liam Everts also deserves credit who has a lot of pressure due to his surname but won three GP’s this year – he actually won more overalls than Adamo! The young Belgian ended up fourth in the MX2 World Championship which shows another big improvement.
Heading into the 2024 season, will be interesting as both seem to improve every single year. Back when Adamo was racing the EMX150 title, yes, he was fast and talented but not many would have predicted he’d go onto win a world title so it’s clear to see just how hard he works and it’ll be interesting to see if he can make another step up in 2024.
With the likes of Längenfelder, Benistant, De Wolf and Coenen just to name a few the MX2 GP season should provide more great racing at the sharp end but KTM will be hoping to come out on top yet again.
Article: Andy McKinstry
Image: Ray Archer