Factory Yamaha Riders Fired Up for French Grand Prix
Factory Yamaha Riders Fired Up for French Grand Prix
Following a thrilling Grand Prix in Spain where Maxime Renaux and Glenn Coldenhoff secured Yamaha its first 1-2 finish since the Lombardian Grand Prix in August 2015, the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP team is highly motivated for the 10th round of the FIM Motocross World Championship. This weekend's Grand Prix will take place at the circuit Raymond Demy in Ernee, France. It will be a special event for Renaux and Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MX2’s Thibault Benistant, who will be competing in front of their home fans.
After claiming his first-ever premier class win with a double-moto victory in Spain just days ago, Renaux is oozing confidence. The recently turned 22-year-old rookie is eager to race on home soil, although Ernee is not a track that he is familiar with having only raced at the venue once in the past. Nevertheless, the Frenchman is looking forward to putting on a show for the thousands of fans and is aiming for his fourth podium finish of the year. He is currently second in the MXGP Championship Standings, 66-points down on the leader Tim Gajser.
Coldenhoff is also in good spirits after two consecutive podium finishes at the previous two Grands Prix in Sardinia and Spain, even though he is feeling second-hand after a fall on the sighting lap ahead of Race 1 last weekend. This week, the 31-year-old will focus on making a full recovery to be ready to challenge the top step of the podium in Ernee – a circuit he enjoys racing at. He is currently fifth in the championship chase.
At the same time, Jeremy Seewer arrives determined to bounce back from a couple of rough Grand Prix rounds. The five-time vice World Champion has had a challenging run of late but remains optimistic that he can return to the podium and the fight for the ‘GP’ victory. As a fan of hilly old-school tracks, the next two rounds of racing will take place at two of his favourite stops on the calendar – Ernee and Teutschenthal. The ‘91’ remains third in the championship points, 46-points down on his teammate, Renaux.
In MX2, Jago Geerts is determined to reclaim the championship leaders’ red plate. Having lost a bundle of points to the new leader Tom Vialle after a spectacular crash in Spain, the Belgian is now 10-points down in the championship chase. This week, the 22-year-old is focusing on recovery to return to the top step of the podium.
Adding to the excitement, Benistant is looking forward to racing in front of the home crowd. The 19-year-old French star loves racing on home soil and really enjoys the track in Ernee. Having raced and excelled at a pre-season race at the venue in 2020, the ‘198’ is motivated and confident he can achieve a good result.
Enhancing Yamaha’s presence at the French Grand Prix , the Hutten Metaal Yamaha Official EMX250 team will be back in action with its three riders Rick Elzinga, Andrea Bonacorsi and Dave Kooiker contesting the fifth round of the EMX250 series. Currently second in the Championship Standings, only 4-points down on the leader, Elzinga aims to reclaim the red plate this weekend. At the same time, the previous round winner, Bonacorsi, hopes to break into the top three. ‘Bona’ is currently fourth in the standings, 4-points down on third.
Last but not least, and fresh off the top step of the podium in Spain, the French-owned MJC Yamaha Official EMX125 team will line up for the fifth round of the series. Karlis Reisulis will spearhead the effort as the rider currently third in the EMX125 series with two podium finishes to his credit. At the same time, the most recent round winner Ivano van Erp will hope to replicate that result again this weekend. Van Erp is currently fifth in the Championship Standings, 1-point shy of fourth, while the teams’ youngest rider Ferruccio Zanchi aims for two consistent races to boost his place in the standings. He is currently 10th.
2nd MXGP Championship Standings, 338-points
“I am really pumped for my home GP this weekend. I know it will be a really nice event with a lot of fans, so I am looking forward to that. My goals will be to get as close as possible to the win, and at least be on the podium. I don’t want to put pressure on myself, just want to keep doing what I am doing as it is already working quite well. We will try to get good starts because that will be important, and then keep a cool head and just do my best.”
3rd MXGP Championship Standings, 292-points
“I love Ernee. It’s one of my favourite track. I remember MXoN there a few years ago, I absolutely loved it. Only good memories! I definitely see myself on the box this weekend. I hope that I can start on Saturday with a good feeling, and then I think I can fight up in front, and aim for more than just a podium.”
5th MXGP Championship Standings, 272-points
“This week, I have actually been focusing on recovery because the crash I had on the sighting lap in Race 1 in Spain actually was heavier than we thought. I do like the track in Ernee; I always like technical tracks and normally in Ernee the track crew do an incredible job preparing the track so that there are many bumps and lines. The atmosphere is always great in France and could be even better after Maxime won last weekend, so they will be there for his home GP this weekend. I was third in Sardinia, second last weekend, so you can fill in the gaps for what will be this weekend *laughs*”
2nd MX2 Championship Standings, 372-points
"I will take it easy this week. After my big crash my body needs some rest so this week will be an easy one to be 100% again in Ernee. I like the track there. It's an old school track with a lot of hills and off-camber corners. I was on the podium in the EMX250 class there a few years ago, so the track suits me well. I'm looking forward to it.'
10th MX2 Championship Standings, 183-points
“I’m really looking forward to the French GP; the fans will be there to support us, the French riders, so that will be really nice. Last year I did a pre-season there and did pretty good finishing just behind Tom (Vialle), so I look forward to going to Ernee for the GP this weekend.”