England and Italy – Rider Comments

Max Nagl, Antonio Cairoli, Pauls Jonass, and Julien Lieber all had victories on the weekend. Here are some comments from some of the leading riders. More comments added later. Ray Archer image

Max Nagl: “It was a good day for us. My starts were good in all three motos and I’m happy that I could ride at my own pace. Everything is going according to plan with our pre-season preparations and to get away with the overall win in England is also a good confidence booster. Everybody in the team is giving their best and we will continue working as hard as we do hoping to be 100% for the start of the MXGP series in three weeks’ time in Qatar.”

Jorge Prado: “I felt good in the practice and was pretty confident going into the first race. I made a small gap but then I made a mistake and went off the track in one corner. The group behind caught me and went past but I fought back. I think I could have won this race but a podium third is not too bad. I also had an awesome start in the second race but then I crashed. I believe I learned a lot today and if I do a good race next weekend at Ottobiano maybe I can be the champion. The track is softer there and that’s better for me.”

Max Anstie: “The Hawkstone International is a special race for me and I’m happy I showed I can battle for the top. I got the holeshot in the opening moto and then pretty much rode my own race to the win. I also had a great start in moto two but soon after I had a small crash while leading the race. I gave it my all after my crash and managed to finish fifth. The Superfinal went pretty good, my start wasn’t bad and I pushed hard to finish third. We have one last race next week in France and then it’s full steam ahead for the MXGP season.”

Antonio Cairoli: “We’ve had a great weekend at home here at Malagrotta. I won the pole position this morning and then the MX1 race. The little crash in the Elite race made it a bit more difficult but sometimes its good to have to overtake and fight for it. I managed to come back from fifth to win the second race. The track was very good, also very technical and demanding, so I’m very happy about the weekend.” Cairoli added that it was very important to have his feeling and his old racing style back after having some injury problems last season. “I feel great again and I’m trying to train a bit better. It’s working and I see the difference,” he added.

Jeremy Seewer: “I have a good feeling on the bike, that’s the most important thing. I could have won and not felt good, but I think it’s better to know you’re feeling good and have extra to give.”

Bas Vaessen: “Overall it went well, but I completely messed-up my starts. The first moto, I think, I was dead last and came all the way-up through the field and almost the same in the second race. I started to push more-and-more at the end of the race and my lap-times were good, so I think it was a decent first day racing,”

Glenn Coldenhoff: “I think I showed my speed in the elite race. I started in sixth and I moved up to second, then after Tony went down I took the lead and stayed there for about 20 minutes. In the end my power was gone, and I had to slow down and not take any risks. But we know the speed is there and we can run upfront. This is the positive thing to take away from this weekend.”

Jeremy van Horebeek: “I really like the new start line. It makes the start the same for everyone, it works really well with my set up and for me it’s really good because good starts is something that I was missing last year. I had a good weekend, I felt good on my YZ450FM, I felt like I could keep up with Tony (Cairoli) but I spent too much time eating his roost to make a pass. Anyway, we finished really close and I am happy that I know my speed is there.”

Romain Febvre: “In the first race I was feeling good. I got a little bit of arm-pump and only finished fourth, but in the second race it was much better and I finished third so I was on the podium at the end of the day.”

Shaun Simpson: “It’s a bit of a shame really. I just wasn’t feeling it from the get-go. I crashed in the first turn and was run over, I thought I might be okay when the gate dropped so I went out for the second race but wasn’t feeling great and struggled to fight. I just ended up circulating, so I didn’t go out for the final race. I will need to take a few days to recover and try to get back to 100% before I can give it everything I’ve got.”

Gautier Paulin: “I feel that today we took a big step towards the right direction. Following last week’s race in Italy we spent two full days testing the bike in sandy tracks and it definitely paid off. In the opening moto I got a bad start and fought my way to sixth. My best race was during moto two. I got a decent start and raced to second at the chequered flag. Overall, it’s been a positive day for me and the team and we will continue working hard to perfect all the minor details before the start of the world championship in Qatar.”

Arminas Jasikonis: “Overall, the speed of one lap was good, I won the qualification. I made a small mistake in the first moto but I’m happy, I know where I am, I made quite big-steps since last year and a big thanks to Stefan and the team for making that possible,” said the tall Lithuanian.

Thomas Kjer-Olsen: “It was a solid weekend for us and we can be happy with it. I felt good on my bike and it was nice to get two top three results for second overall in my class. My starts in both heat races were great and I showed I have the speed to fight for the top. Going head to head with the MX1 riders during the Superfinal was a quite interesting experience. To get away with sixth during the Superfinal is a great result too.”

Hunter Lawrence: “It was good, only a pre-season race just to get into the swing of things, but it wasn’t too bad. We got to see how myself and my bike works in race conditions and now we’re coming out safe and uninjured and one-step closer to lining-up at round one in Qatar. I’m very happy with how things went.”

Kevin Strijbos: “It went pretty good, better than expected, to be honest, because I didn’t have a lot of time on the bike. We changed some stuff before the race and during the day and I felt good. I wasn’t trying to push too hard, just put some laps on the bike and overall it was a good day.”

Thomas Covington: “Overall, it’s been a great day for us. I had a really good first moto and managed to claim the runner up spot behind Jonass. Then in moto two my start wasn’t that great and soon after I started feeling the effects of a sickness I’ve been struggling with since the beginning of last week. During the Superfinal I felt like I was running out of energy so raced cautiously for the finish. Overall, everything is going according to schedule and the work will continue next week in France.”

Conrad Mewse: “It was an OK weekend for us. I got the holeshot in the opening moto but then stalled the bike in a slow-speed section and lost lot of time. The track was rough and one-lined, so there were not that many options for passing. It’s really good we had the chance to test ourselves against the top riders in our class. For me personally I know I can do better, so the goal is to continue working hard until the beginning of the world championship at the end of February.”