Watson and Geerts ready to start new motocross season!
On Sunday, the international motocross season will kick off in Riola Sardo, Italy. New year, new opportunities and new ambitions. Also for the Monster Energy Kemea Yamaha MX2 Team, which will start with two riders in the FIM World Championship MX2: the Briton Ben Watson, fourth place in 2018, and the Belgian Jago Geerts, who finished eighth in his rookie season.
“This year we must raise the bar”, says team owner Hans Corvers. Last season the Monster Energy Kemea Yamaha MX2 Team consisted of three riders, this year there will only be two Kemea Yamaha’s behind the start gate. A conscious choice. “The entire staff remained,” says team owner Corvers. “That means that we can focus even more on our two riders. We do not want to leave anything to chance.”
2018 was a great year for the team. Watson finished fourth in the World Championship, Geerts eighth. Both of them also grabbed a GP podium. As icing on the cake, they both represented their country in the Motocross of Nations at the end of the year. “We can indeed look back with satisfaction”, says Corvers. “But we want more… We have to raise the bar. Our riders are a year older and stronger, in terms of engine and suspension we have also taken another step forward. With Watson we aim for the top three, with Geerts for top 5. Also on our wish list: a grand prix victory.”
LAST STEP“On the one hand, we have to show ambition. On the other hand, we have to be careful that we do not put too much pressure on the boys”, says team manager Marnicq Bervoets. “Don’t forget: the last step to the top is the toughest one, especially mentally. In the next weeks we are going to get some indications during the international races, but we will only really know how good our riders are after three Grand Prix.”Both Watson and Geerts started their preparation for the new season already in November. On Sunday, the first international race is scheduled in Riola Sardo, in Sardinia. Then the duo will race in Ottobiano (February 3), Hawkstone Park (February 17) and Lacapelle Marival (February 24) to get ready for the first Grand Prix in Neuquen, Argentina (March 3).
Jago Geerts: “I’ve had a good preparation. I don’t have to go to school anymore, therefore I had much more time to practice. In November and December the focus was mainly on the physical part, in January we added training on the bike. I mainly stayed in Belgium. Until this week I was able to train without a problem in my own country. The tracks were heavy and technical. Perfect. But to be honest: I’m glad that the races are starting again. Racing is the most fun part. My goal this year is clear: doing better than last season. I’m aiming for top five.”
Ben Watson: “Actually, we haven’t changed that much in my preparation compared to last year, although we have put a little more emphasis on my technique. Like last year, I started riding on a 450 and then switched to my 250. I’m already in Sardinia since early January. Most of the time the weather was good. So I have done a lot of practice on the bike. My preparation has been very good so far. 2018 was my best and the most fun year of racing in my career. But I want to get even better. I want to be on the box much more this year. Preferably also at the end of the season.”
Words: Kemea Yamaha