A top-three start in Race 1 put Geerts in the perfect position to capitalize on a mistake from the early race leader Isaak Gifting. The ‘193’ took charge before the end of the opening lap and led for two laps before losing the front on a 180-degree right-hander.
Taking a calmer approach to the race, Renaux was able to slot his YZ250F promptly into the lead. The ‘959’, in special yellow livery for his team's home Grand Prix, was inch-perfect for all but one lap. That lap was the final and most crucial one and it cost him a win after he came up short on a triple jump and missed his line. Thomas Olsen was able to cash-in on the Frenchman’s error and put in a flying final lap to steal the victory.
Renaux had to settle for second, while Watson proved he can still be competitive without a clean start. The tall Brit started outside of the top-10 and consistently pushed forward to finish fourth. Two more mistakes from Geerts left the Belgian eighth at the flag.
A dramatic final race saw all three Yamaha stars fight from outside of the top-10. Despite starting his Città di Mantova Grand Prix campaign with a crash ridden opening race, Geerts managed to make amends with a superb charge through the pack to challenge the lead. The ‘193’ put the pressure on Vialle but had his front-wheel taken out while trying to make a pass. Geerts crashed in the incident but managed to remount in time to salvage fifth.
A good start was the name of the game, with the tight and compact Mantova circuit proving challenging to pass on. After a fantastic ride for second position in the opening race, Renaux could only recover for seventh after a poor start in the final outing. Renaux and Watson fell foul to the carnage that frequently occurs at turn-one. Both riders came back strong, particularly Renaux, who fought back to finish seventh. Watson fell again while looking for unique opportunities to pass and eventually crossed the line in 13th, but both riders were docked two positions for jumping on waved yellow flags.
At the end of a hard-fought, action-packed day in the sand, Geerts has retained second position in the MX2 World Championship Standings, 56-points clear of Renaux in third. Watson is now seventh.
The next round of the FIM Motocross World Championship will take place here in Mantova in three-days’ time on Sunday 4th October.
For full results from the MX2 Grand Prix of Città di Mantova, click here.