US MXGP preview
GLEN HELEN (United States), 16 September 2015 – It has been an epic season so far and this weekend one of the most famous motocross tracks in the world, Glen Helen Raceway in San Bernardino, California will host the final round of the FIM Motocross World Championship.
The first time the FIM Motocross World Championship tackled the beast that is Glen Helen was back in 1990 where Belgian Eric Geboers was victorious. The motocross grand prix then returned again for the two years that followed, in 1991 and 1992, where French legend Jean-Michel Bayle headlined. Eighteen years after Bayle’s victory in ’92, MXGP returned where both world champions at that time Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antonio Cairoli and Marvin Musquin won in their respective classes. What is exciting is that both Cairoli and Musquin will be racing this weekend while the winners of the most recent grand prix at Glen Helen, in 2011, Clement Desalle and Ken Roczen will not be onsite as they are both recovering from injuries.
Yamaha Factory Racing Yamalube’s Romain Febvre has never raced in the USA and will be looking forward to put in some laps out here in Southern California. It will be interesting to see how he goes on the unfamiliar territory and with a lot of new names and faces on the gate.
Hitachi Construction Machinery Revo KTM’s Shaun Simpson is one name that is recognized in the USA. Simpson, who raced a round of the American Nationals back in August, has been open about how pumped he is to return to the US for a grand prix. The Scotsman is having a fantastic season and would love to wrap it up with a podium finish here in the States.
Twenty-seven points separate the Team HRC duo of Gautier Paulin and Evgeny Bobryshev. Both Honda riders have been going turn about on the podium but it’s Paulin who has the advantage. If Paulin stays out of trouble he should put a lock on second overall in the championship while Bobryshev is already more than 50 points clear of Simpson in fourth which means third place is the worst he can do this year.
Yamaha Factory Racing Yamalube’s Jeremy Van Horebeek is still trying to find the same form he carried last year where he landed on the podium twelve times, eleven of which were consecutive.
As for the other high-flying rookie, Rockstar Energy Suzuki Europe’s Glenn Coldenhoff, this will be his final outing in the world championship on yellow before he switches to orange. With fellow Suzuki riders Clement Desalle and Kevin Strijbos out injured, it’s up to the ‘259’ to fly the flag for Suzuki which he will have every intention of doing.
Meanwhile, the American fans should be super pumped to see how their home riders will fair against the best in the world. Star Yamaha Yamalube’s Cooper Webb in particular as a member of Team USA will be racing in his first pro race on the bigger 450cc bike.
MXGP Championship Top Ten: 1. Romain Febvre (FRA, YAM), 688 points; 2. Gautier Paulin (FRA, HON), 566 p.; 3. Evgeny Bobryshev (RUS, HON), 539 p.; 4. Shaun Simpson (GBR, KTM), 481 p.; 5. Maximilian Nagl (GER, HUS), 442 p.; 6. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, YAM), 426 p.; 7. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 416 p.; 8. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, SUZ), 393 p.; 9. Todd Waters (AUS, HUS), 344 p.; 10. Clement Desalle (BEL, SUZ), 331 p.
After a season long battle, either Honda Gariboldi’s Tim Gajser or Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Pauls Jonass will be crowned the FIM Motocross MX2 World Champion. Gajser currently leads the championship by eighteen points over Jonass, who is lucky to be racing after his enormous crash in Mexico last weekend.
After Ryan Villopoto’s success at the MXGP of Thailand at the start of the season, history was made last weekend when Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team’s Thomas Covington became the second American to win a grand prix this year which is the first time we have had an American winner in each class since the beginning of the four stroke era.
Meanwhile Kemea Yamaha Yamalube’s Benoit Paturel landed on the third step of the podium in Leon, which was extra special for the team as their second consecutive podium performance after Paturel’s teammate Brent Van Doninck bagged one at the MXGP of The Netherlands.
Monster Energy DRT Kawasaki’s Max Anstie will be returning to the venue where he made his grand prix debut. Anstie is third in the championship standings and while he has a mathematical chance of winning the championship, the chances are unlikely, but what he can secure is the FOX Holeshot 5,000 Euro prize, all he needs is one more holeshot.
MX2 Championship Top Ten: 1. Tim Gajser (SLO, HON), 556 points; 2. Pauls Jonass (LAT, KTM), 538 p.; 3. Max Anstie (GBR, KAW), 506 p.; 4. Valentin Guillod (SUI, YAM), 475 p.; 5. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, SUZ), 467 p.; 6. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 423 p.; 7. Julien Lieber (BEL, YAM), 418 p.; 8. Jordi Tixier (FRA, KAW), 393 p.; 9. Benoit Paturel (FRA, YAM), 356 p.; 10. Petar Petrov (BUL, KAW), 304 p.