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Yamaha Factory MXGP & MX2 Teams Fired Up for French Grand Prix

Yamaha Factory MXGP & MX2 Teams Fired Up for French Grand Prix

Less than 1-week after the MXGP of Germany, the paddock continues its run of 10 events in a row and is currently enroute to Lacapelle Marival, France, for the 12th round of the FIM Motocross World Championship. For the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP team, the French Grand Prix offers another chance for its star riders Jeremy Seewer and Glenn Coldenhoff to chase a place on the podium. At the same time, Ben Watson aims to maintain his position as the class's best-placed rookie. In MX2, the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MX2 team is prepared for an incredible weekend as it enters the MXGP of France with French ace Maxime Renaux leading the FIM MX2 World Championship by 85-points over teammate Jago Geerts. The team also arrives with speedy Frenchman Thibault Benistant, who is chasing a second MX2 podium finish.

Although the circuit in Lacapelle Marival has never staged a Grand Prix before this weekend, the track itself is familiar to most riders as it plays host to one of the most popular pre-season international races. The track itself is hard-packed, tight and compact with plenty of elevation. This should make for a relatively technical circuit where, as always, a good start will be key.

Fresh off a positive and refreshing top-five finish in Germany, Seewer is determined to keep the ball rolling. As the Swiss sensation returns to full health, he expects to move closer to the leaders and aims for a strong end to his 2021 campaign. He is currently sixth in the championship standings. 

It’s a similar story for Coldenhoff, who finished on equal points as his teammate last time out. This week the Dutchman will ride twice in France in preparation for the Grand Prix, where he is focused on getting a good start and putting in consistently fast laps. 

As for The Rookie, Watson, the French Grand Prix offers an opportunity to gain more experience and for the 24-year-old to move up into ninth position in the championship standings. He is currently 10th, a mere 3-points shy of MXGP veteran Alessandro Lupino. 

Over in MX2, the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MX2 team enters the 12th round of the championship on a high after a fantastic round in Germany that saw Renaux claim his third GP win of the season. With three wins and nine podium finishes to his credit, the Frenchman successfully extended his lead to 85-points over teammate Jago Geerts. 

Although the circuit in Lacapelle is unfamiliar territory for the championship leader, Renaux, the ‘959’ is ready for any and all challenges as he chases a second motocross world title – his first was in 2015 when he won the Junior Motocross World Championship in the 125cc class aboard a YZ125.

After moving up into second position in the MX2 Championship Standings, Geerts hopes to continue his front running form as he sets his sights on a fifth piece of podium silverware. Meanwhile, Benistant looks forward to racing on home soil and is confident of more improvements to come as he focuses on his starts and increasing his race intensity. The 198 is currently sixth in the championship standings. 

Also joining the premier classes in Lacapelle Marival, the fourth and sixth rounds of the EMX125 and EMX250 Championships are set to take place on Saturday 9th October. 

Confidence is high under the MJC Yamaha Official EMX125 awning after Ivano van Erp claimed an emphatic win at the German EMX125 round last weekend. The victory was van Erp’s first-ever European Championship round win. He is now ninth in the championship chase, while the team’s youngest rider, Ferruccio Zanchi, remains a solid top-five contender. He is sixth. After sustaining a pre-season injury and missing one round, Karlis Reisulis is 24th. 

Leading the way for the Hutten Metaal Yamaha Official EMX250 team and fresh off a maiden EMX250 podium appearance in Germany, Andrea Bonacorsi is on the hunt for more as he looks to improve on his fifth position in the EMX250 championship. The 18-year-old rookie will be joined on the gate by fellow GYTR kitted YZ250FM riders, Dave Kooiker and Jeremy Sydow. Kooiker is currently ninth in the series, while Sydow is down in 27th, having just returned from a season-long injury last weekend. 

Jeremy Seewer

6th MXGP Championship Standings, 309-points

“I have been racing to Lacapelle a few times. It’s quite narrow and small, and I am curious as to how they are going to fix it for the GP. It will be for everyone the same and actually I don’t care where we race or how we race, just as long as we do go out and race where I can be my old self. My training is back to normal, so I should be on the bike, training and trying to keep myself sharp for the rest of the season. I will focus on the riding, won’t be making too many changes on the bike, just getting in two good days, and make another step in terms of speed. My goal will be top-five and to be closer to the podium.” 

Glenn Coldenhoff

8th MXGP Championship Standings, 263-points

“I did some pre-season races in the past. If the layout will be the same for the GP this weekend, it will be a small and tight track compared to other French GP’s like Ernee or St Jean D’Angely. I will ride two days in France this week to prepare. The goal is to take two good starts and have consistent results. Hopefully, this will result in a good overall.”

Ben Watson

10th MXGP Championship Standings, 223-points

“I’ve raced Lacapelle twice before for a pre-season event. It is a small track but with some elevation, jumps, and waves so I think it can get technical. At this moment, and having races every weekend, there is not a lot of time to test and make big changes, I feel you can easily get lost and while there is still a lot of races to go, they will come very quickly now so I will try to focus more on improving myself race by race rather than changing a lot of things with the bike. Goals remain the same as usual. I am not crazy focused on my result number at the end of the weekend. I need to ride to my best ability and have fun; the results will come with that.”

Maxime Renaux

MX2 Championship Leader, 448-points

“I’ve never been to Lacapelle so it’s gonna be nice to discover a new track. I really like those back-to-back races. Even if it’s intense, I enjoy being out for racing every weekend. The recovery is really important, so we try to recover as much as possible between the races. We will plan the training to not use too much energy and keep it fresh for the weekends. I will do only one riding session this week just to get some feeling on the bike. I am not going to make any changes to the bike. I am very happy with all the settings now. The goal for the weekend is to keep on being on the podium and getting good points. Trying to start in front also will be the goal of the weekend.”

Jago Geerts

2nd MX2 Championship Standings, 363-points

"I have ridden in Lacapelle two or three times. It’s a pretty small track, but the layout is nice. They will probably make some changes for the GP this weekend. So, we will see on Sunday.I will ride probably one time this week and work some more on my starts to be ready for Sunday. My goal is to have fun on the bike and try to make two good starts. Hopefully, I will be back on the podium on Sunday."

Thibault Benistant

6th MX2 Championship Standings, 307-points

“I like the track in Lacapelle. I have not ridden there so much, but it’s a good track and for sure, being able to ride in from of the French public is going to be really nice for me and something I really look forward to.”