Benistant Finishes Top-5 in Rookie EMX250 Season While Fernandez Impresses at Final Round
The eighth and final round of the EMX250 Championship in Uddevalla, Sweden, was as tightly contested as the opening round. MJC Yamaha's Thibault Benistant enjoyed a solid weekend of racing where he was able to secure a place inside the top-five in the Championship Overall in his rookie season, while SDM Corse Yamaha EMX250's Ruben Fernandez jumped up two positions to finish ninth in the final classification after missing three rounds of the series due to injury.
In the opening race of the weekend, Benistant rocketed out of the gate on his GYTR kitted YZ250F. He was fourth on lap-one and put in a strong ride to finish sixth after losing two positions to the championship leaders.
Still finding his form after a serious mid-season injury, SDM Corse Yamaha EMX250's Ruben Fernandez put in an incredible ride as he power surged his way from 15th up into eighth, while his teammate Rick Elzinga was equally as impressive as he stormed to 14th position after starting outside of the top-20.
In the second race, Benistant did his best to fight back to twelfth position after a poor start, while Fernandez stunned with an astonishing fourth place finish after a great start.
Built in a rock quarry, the circuit of Uddevalla brought forth a new challenge for the EMX250 riders with the terrain being incredibly hard to read. The dirt was loose and stoney on top with a hard packed, rough and edgy clay base. Pushing the limit often ended in error, which made passing hard. SDM Corse Yamaha EMX250's Caleb Grothues had two similar performances. He started around 18th in both races and ended up finishing 19th in one, and 20th in the other. He also finished the season in 20th position in the final classification.
Unfortunately, SDM Corse Yamaha EMX250's Gianluca Facchetti was landed on by another rider while battling for a place inside the top-ten in Race 1. The young Italian went immediately to the medical center where it was confirmed that he had broken his collar-bone.
Uddevalla also played host to the seventh and final round of the EMX125 Championship. MJC Yamaha EMX125's home star Magnus Smith ended his season on a high note with two season best race finishes, 17-16 for nineteenth overall, while wildcard MJC Yamaha YZ125 rider Adam Kovacs impressed with a 18-14 scorecard for 17thoverall.
Smith made solid progress throughout the season and eventually ranked 34th in the European EMX125 series, while Kovacs wrapped up his rookie season in 23rd position, 4-points shy of the top-20.