Qualifying through lap times often does not suit riders that are ‘pure-bred racers’ – this meaning that they thrive on the pressure of racing and can often push harder when championship points are what they are riding for as opposed to doing a single fast-lap at a speed and level of intensity that cannot be sustained for a 30 minute plus 2-lap race duration. All three MXGP riders prefer racing as opposed to a single fast lap. Seewer ended the Qualifying Practice session as the best-placed Yamaha rider in eighth, 1-second quicker than Coldenhoff in 14th and Watson in 22nd.
Matterley Basin this year was a lot firmer and slicker than in previous years. The hardpacked, rough and bumpy base didn’t develop the deep ruts it usually does, which meant the speed of the venue was high and the riders felt the track lacked technical demand. Regardless, Coldenhoff and Seewer shined as they powered their YZ450FMs to the front of the field in the opening race of the day.
Seewer took the holeshot but was quickly shuffled back to sixth after a frantic first lap. One of the riders that passed the Swiss rider was his teammate Coldenhoff who forced his way up into third to challenge the early race leaders Antonio Cairoli and Jorge Prado.
As the dark clouds crept in, Coldenhoff lost positions to Jeffrey Herlings and the reigning World Champion Tim Gajser but managed to hold on to fifth, while Seewer was relegated to eighth at the flag.
With the easing of Covid-19 restrictions, 4000 spectators were permitted to attend the British Grand Prix this year. Thriving on the energy propelling from his home crowd, Watson managed to finish on the cusp of the top-10 in 11th.
Rainfall made for a challenging end to the weekend, with rain on the goggle lenses affecting the riders’ vision. In combination with the sheer speed of the Matterley Basin circuit and lack of ruts, the racing was incredibly intense. Seewer made some positive changes to his YZ450FM ahead of Race 2 and pushed hard for a top-five finish, while Coldenhoff had to bounce back from a small crash to finish ninth.
Watson battled back from a mid-pack start to claim his first top-10 finish of 2021.
Seewer is now sixth position in the MXGP Championship Standings, while Coldenhoff has moved up into 10th. Watson also made a significant improvement on his place in the championship and is now 15th.
The next round of the FIM Motocross World Championship will take place next weekend in Maggiora, Italy, on July 4th.