Fourth MX2 podium of the season for Guillod in Sweden
Standing Construct Yamaha's Valentin Guillod was once again a star of the MX2 category in the 2015 FIM Motocross World Championship as the fast and talented Swiss grabbed the runner-up position today at a sunny Grand Prix of Sweden on his YZ250F. Uddevalla welcomed 22,000 fans into the condensed and cambered facility that featured hard-pack, dusty and slippery terrain. Three Yamahas featured in the top ten of the final MX2 results sheet with Kemea Yamaha's Brent Van Doninck taking a bright sixth place.
Round eleven of eighteen baked in summer temperatures and Yamaha's MX2 crew were looking for the same levels of thrust as the Swedish fighter jet that rocketed over the circuit in a demonstration performance on Saturday morning.
Guillod was the standout in the first moto. He took his time to hunt Pauls Jonass in third position and soon passed the struggling Latvian to take his tally of top three moto finishes to six for the season. Van Doninck beat Jeremy Seewer by the narrowest of margins to obtain sixth and register his second highest result of 2015 and in his rookie season. Team-mate Benoit Paturel had a great ride to recover from a first lap crash and last position to come all the way back to twelfth. Standing Construct Yamaha's Julien Lieber crashed out of eighth when his rear brake failed and he drifted back to twentieth in what was a race of 'survival'.
For the second race in the afternoon and across a terrain that was becoming increasingly littered with ruts as well as braking and acceleration bumps, Guillod was again a protagonist. '92' was lucky not to fully hit the fallen Jeffrey Herlings on the exit of the first corner but a slight touch caused his gear lever to bend and VG had to manipulate the component to be able to shift through the motor. He reached sixth place and knew he needed two more positions to make sure of a fourth podium celebration from the last six GPs and thus pushed hard to pass Vsevolod Brylyakov and Lieber - running better and higher - to secure a satisfying fourth spot and therefore second overall. Lieber rescued what had been a tough day so far with sixth but was also slightly frustrated to have lost a top four finish. Paturel and Van Doninck circulated close together in tenth and eleventh. The Frenchman hit the deck once more and was again on the chase whereas the Belgian was struck by another rider and then found difficulty in finding places to make safe overtaking moves.
Sweden saw the EMX250 European Championship in action for their sixth appointment from nine in the 2015 contest. Damon Graulus had a contrasting weekend. The Belgian rode to victory on Saturday afternoon in the first moto after profiting from Nick Kouwenberg's error. On Sunday morning the Kemea Yamaha rider steered his YZ250F to thirty-sixth after a first lap crash that left him far behind the pack once he had restarted. In the series standings Graulus is still firmly in the hunt for the title. He is fourth, 22 points from the top and will be looking for more come round seven in just a few days.
The Grand Prix of Latvia at the fast and open Kegums circuit will bring the FIM Motocross World Championship up to round twelve of eighteen next weekend.
3rd and 4th for 2nd overall. Championship Position: 3rd
"I was struggling with the track yesterday and did not find the right setting with the bike but finally it came together for the qualifying race. I didn't have the best start in the first moto but I was able to pass some guys and could stay on two wheels in the first five laps because they put so much water down. It was really slippery. When it got drier I was able to push more and third place was really good. I didn't make a good start again in the second moto and I really have to work on that. Jeffrey [Herlings] crashed in front of me and I tried to go to the right but still hit his wheel with my shifter and it was bent. It was really difficult to ride because shifting down was OK but to go up meant moving my foot around a lot. When I got the signal that I would just miss the podium I pushed really hard and got two more positions right at the end. To finish fourth was really good for the championship and I took good points today. I want to thank Standing Construct Yamaha for the great job they did and all my sponsors for the support. It is very cool to see two Swiss riders on the podium and I want to dedicate this to my grandmother who just turned 85!"
20th and 6th for 13th overall. Championship Position: 8th
"I broke my rear brake on the first lap of the first moto and just crashed on a slippery corner using the front. I took one point for twentieth but couldn't do any better. The second moto was better but I didn't have the speed to run with the leaders. I was disappointed to lose two positions on the last laps and need to work this week for an improvement in Latvia."
Brent Van Doninck
6th and 11th for 6th overall. Championship Position: 17th
"This week I was able to train on the bike again for the first time since my knee injury, and I felt the difference. If you only do the races you miss some rhythm and it's hard to build up. Now, this weekend, I finally felt like I was riding like it was at the beginning of the season. In the first race I finished sixth after some riders in front of me crashed, so that was good. in the second race my start wasn't too bad, but then someone hit me and I dropped back a lot of places. I tried to come back but it was just impossible to pass. The tracks are so flat these days. There are some bumps but they don't create any lines, and that makes it hard to pass. Anyway I still finished sixth overall, so that's great. Up to Latvia now where the track is more sandy, so I'm looking forward."
12th and 10th for 10th overall. Championship Position: 12th
"I'm really mad at myself I knew I had to be careful in the first laps as they had watered the track but in both races I hit the deck. Once you crash it is so hard to come back. The first race I was riding well and made a good comeback but the second one was more difficult. It could have been much better and with a tenth overall I'm not satisfied. But anyway, we need to look forward now and I will try to do better next week in Latvia."
1st and 36th for 7th overall. EMX250 championship Position: 4th
"I felt great this weekend. The first moto went really good, I built up my race lap-after-lap and was closing in on Nick. I was a little lucky he crashed and was happy to win the moto. In the second moto my start was good and I was immediately having a good feeling on the bike. On the large corner on the back of the track I suddenly flew over the bars. I don't know what happened there, some people told me I was hit but I didn't feel anything. I lost a lot of time and just couldn't get past any riders. I lost a lot of points in the championship and should have been up there but that's racing. There are still 150 points to win. I won't give up yet!"