Pauls Jonass interview

Red plate owner Pauls Jonass continues to make bad days good as he remains the man to beat in the FIM MX2 world motocross championship. The Red Bull KTM Factory rider finished a solid second in last weekend’s Grand Prix of Limburg, and extended his series points lead over Jeremy Seewer.

After a crash in the second moto it looked likely that the Latvian would be losing points instead of gaining them, but he once again showed he is the class rider in the field.

With six GP wins to his name, and a handy points lead over Seewer, the happy go lucky Jonass knows the job isn’t anywhere near done. We caught up with him and asked him about Lommel, the USGP and the MXoN.

MXlarge: Tell me, first that second race when you go down in the first corner and everyone is like Seewer is going to make up some big points on you today. What did you think when you were down, and how good did it feel to get the result you got?

Jonass: You know, always when you crash in the first turn you don’t think anything, you just ride. I knew it was going to be a long race, because the track was very rough, so I knew I could make some passes. When I got up I took my time, cleaned my cloths and gloves and Marc (de Reuver) was very angry with me, he said what was I doing, checking my make-up or something, but you need to clean your gloves, you can get arm pump from sand all over you. I thought if I cleaned them I lose five seconds but could gain 10 seconds in the moto. I took my time, found my rhythm and I was riding well. At the start, I wasn’t riding perfect and maybe not at the end, but in the middle, I was riding well. I was not satisfied with my riding, but I gained three points on the championship which was a good thing, but it can always be better.

MXLarge: As you mentioned, mid race you were riding really well and making up a lot of places. Seemed like you were really in a zone. How is that to do, what does it take?

Jonass: Sure, when you get in the zone everything goes easy, the riding, and you pass easy and the time goes so quickly, I really enjoyed it. Coming to the end of the race, my mechanic mentioned it was still possible to get one more position, which was Calvin Vlaanderen, so I didn’t rush and I didn’t want to take any extra risk and I got him. Maybe I could have gotten a top three, but I got some good points.

MXlarge: What actually happened in that first corner?

Jonass: First of all, I tanged in the start straight with Jeremy, so I didn’t get into the first corner that well. Then on the right-hand corner, I was on the outside and somebody hit my from the inside. I crashed and many riders came on top of me, and some riders foot peg was stuck in my pants, so I couldn’t get it off. I took some time, because I couldn’t get up.

MXLarge: Five rounds to go, how does it work with the mind now, you staying focused or looking at the championship?

Jonass: Today is race day, so I looked at the championship points, but during the week we just focus on the next race, just take it race by race. 50 points seems like a lot, but with five rounds to go you can still lose a lot of points, so we just need to concentrate and work hard.

MXlarge: The battle with Jorge, a little like Jorge and Jeffrey in Assen last year (where Herlings got a little angry with Prado), did you have any trouble with it?

Jonass: No, today it was ok, but in Loket I got a little frustrated, because it was really difficult to pass him, but in Lommel it is so easy to pass and I wasn’t as frustrated. I knew where I could pass and he tried to pass me back, but I stayed calm and didn’t make any mistakes. It was pretty good and I am happy for him. He has been living in Lommel a long time and it’s like his home track.

MXlarge: USGP you will be racing the likes of Joey Savatgy or that type of rider. I am guessing they are a level above our 250 guys. Do you see it that way?

Jonass: I think if they come to Europe we might be a little bit better, but we go to US, to their tracks and it’s their home and it will be difficult to beat them. I saw the track, track looks good a little sandy and its fast. I am not a fan of fast tracks, but I am looking forward to the GP.

MXLarge: It’s going to be really hot, how are you in the heat?

Jonass: I am not too bad in the heat, of course the US guys will be more used to it.

MXlarge: Last question. MXoN, will you be riding and do you look forward to that?

Jonass: We will see, it’s a long season and anything can happen, but so far, I will be riding.

Ray Archer images