Sacha Coenen
News News 25 April 2019

Strong Start to the 2019 Season for Grizzly Yamaha Junior Team’s YZ85 & YZ65 Riders

Encouraging the evolution of motocross by backing young riders, Yamaha Motor Europe is proud to support the Grizzly Yamaha Junior Team and their five riders, Jayson van Drunen, Ashton Boughen, Sacha and Lucas Coenen and Charlie van Nieuwland. 

All five riders are racing for a place at the final round of the European Championships via the North West Zone EMX85 and EMX65 Championship. The North West Zone is made up of five rounds. The first round took place on the 6th and 7th of April in Velke Uherce, Slovakia and was closely followed by round two in Lommel, Belgium on the weekend of April 21st.

The European Championship is all about discovering future world champions. 12-year old Belgian Sacha Coenen put his YZ85 in the "VictorYZone" at the opening round of the EMX85 Championship with a race win and a second place finish in the Race 2 to take claim of the early championship lead. His twin brother, Lucas, finished fifth overall and was the fourth YZ85 rider inside the top-five.

Following the result from the second round of the EMX85 Championship that took place in Lommel, Belgium, Coenen was nudged back to second-position in the championship by fellow YZ85 star Ivano Van Erp.

Van Erp completed the podium at the opening round and following his domination in the sand of Lommel, the young Dutch rider now leads S. Coenen and YZ85 mounted Cas Valk in the EMX85 Championship. After a gritty performance following a spectacular crash, L. Coenen currently lies seventh in the overall classification. 

In the 65cc ranks, Ashton Boughen and Jayson Van Drunen are putting the all-new YZ65 through its paces. 11 year-old super talent Boughen was a shining example of what the YZ65 is capable of as he carved his way through the pack from outside of the top-10 to finish as the runner up the opening race of the season in Slovakia. A fourth place in Race 2 put the young Brit on the third step of the podium, while his teammate achieved his goal of a top-10 finish and was ninth overall. 

Luck was a factor at round two of the EMX65 Championship in Lommel, Belgium. Boughen collided with another rider in Race 1 and finished sixth. He was then was forced out of Race 2 due to bike damage from a fall. Teammate, 10 year-old Van Drunen was unable to race following a light concussion after big crash in race one. 

After two rounds, Boughen remains inside the top-five in the EMX65 Championship, while Van Drunen dropped back to twelfth. 

The next round of the North West Zone EMX85 and EMX65 Championship will take place in Slagelse, Denmark on the weekend of May 12th, where the Grizzly Yamaha Junior Team will be out in full force with all five riders on the line. The event will see 12-year-old Dutchman Charlie van Nieuwland make his 2019 EMX85 Championship debut after missing the first two rounds due to a broken wrist and a dislocated shoulder. 

The fourth round will take place in Reutlingen, Germany on the weekend of May 26th. The fifth and final round will be in Arnhem, The Netherlands on the weekend of June 16thwhere the top-10 riders in each class, EMX85 and EMX65, will receive an invitation to race at the Grand Finale which will coincide with the 13thround of the MXGP World Championship in Loket, Czech Republic, on the weekend of July 28th. 

Each class in attendance at Loket will be made up of 40 riders - the top-10 from each of the four 'zones' of Europe. The riders that made the cut will race two televised races on the exact same track that the MXGP and MX2 riders will be racing on. The combined score from both moto's will determine the 2019 European Champions.