Yamaha Riders Look to Keep Momentum in Lommel
Following the success of the final race at the previous Grand Prix where all four YZ450F mounted MXGP riders finished inside the top-five, the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP and Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha MXGP teams are looking to keep momentum in the deep sand of Lommel this weekend at the fourteenth round of the FIM Motocross World Championship.
The Belgian Grand Prix feels like a home race for all of Yamaha's Factory and Official MXGP and MX2 riders with all six residing less the 25km from the Lommel circuit.
After making a welcomed return to the top step of the podium in the Czech Republic three-days ago, Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP's Romain Febvre is feeling confident. Although the treacherous sand circuit is in complete contrast to the rock-hard clay of Loket, Czech Republic, Febvre enjoys riding the sand and is determined to maintain his winning form. He is currently tenth in the championship points chase, 3-points from moving up into ninth, and 12-points from taking over eighth.
Going from strength to strength since reaching the halfway point of this season, Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP's Jeremy Seewer has strung together three consecutive podium finishes and hopes to extend his impressive streak to four this weekend. The '91' is currently 2ndin the MXGP Championship Standings. He has a 26-point advantage over Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha MXGP's Gautier Paulin.
Paulin knows that Lommel is one of the most mentally and physically demanding tracks in the world, and it is this reason that he enjoys racing at the iconic venue. The '21' reclaimed his place inside the championship top-three last weekend and goes into the Grand Prix this weekend with a 6-point advantage over his teammate, Arnaud Tonus.
Tonus is hoping the hours he put in during the winter will pay dividends. After suffering from a bacterial infection upon his return from Indonesia, the Swiss rider has almost fully recovered and hopes to be back at his peak this weekend.
It is expected to be an exciting weekend in MX2 for the Monster Energy Kemea Yamaha MX2 team as they enter their home Grand Prix. The team based in Genk, Belgium, has its fingers crossed for a maiden Grand Prix victory for their teenage sensation Jago Geerts, who reclaimed third position in the MX2 Championship Standings three days ago.
As for Ben Watson, he is back on the bike but his return to racing is yet to be decided. A decision will be made later this week and will be announced on the Official Yamaha Racing social media platforms, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
2nd MXGP Championship Standings, 405-points
"Lommel feels like my second home. I spend quite some time in Belgium training and stuff. Lommel is a classic race. There is always a really nice atmosphere with all of the French Fries stands and all of Belgian's eating 'pommes'. I'm looking forward to it. I hope the weather will be OK. I will try and get a good feeling out on the track and try to fight for the podium again."
3rd MXGP Championship Standings, 379-points
"Lommel is a sand GP, so it will be a really tough one. We have to train for it and I am training really hard. It's one of the hardest GP's and I really love it when the track is tough like this. We don't have so many races with conditions like it, so it be nice to race there. They usually change the track in Lommel, so I am looking forward to seeing the track and I can't wait to ride it."
4th MXGP Championship Standings, 373-points
"It was good to have a few days of recovery this week. I feel better and hopefully I can ride at least once before the GP to be ready. I am looking forward to it. I have put a lot of hours in the sand during the winter. Lommel is always tough, so I will need to muster some strength, and go out there with my heart on my sleeve to give my all and see where I end up."
10th MXGP Championship Standings, 293-points
"I look forward to racing in the sand. It will be a completely different race to the hard pack of last weekend, and most riders aren't the same on both surfaces, but I like the sand and I look forward to going there. I will try to ride like last weekend. It's important to get comfortable on the bike and to make good starts. These are the main points for this weekend."