Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP & MX2 Stars Primed for Podium Fight in Portugal
Yamaha riders across the board are all set for an adrenaline-pumping weekend as the fifth round of the FIM Motocross World Championship heads to Agueda, Portugal. Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MX2’s Jago Geerts will proudly run the MX2 championship leader’s red plate for a fifth consecutive Grand Prix, while Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP’s Maxime Renaux aims to close the gap in the MXGP title fight.
Located just 75 kilometers south of Porto, the circuit hosting its 25th Grand Prix has undergone significant layout changes this year, including a reversed track, setting the stage for an exciting contest of adaptability and performance.
With four rounds already complete in 2023, Renaux’s impressive performance on the all-new YZ450FM, which includes a Grand Prix win in Switzerland, has put him in a strong position in the championship, just 17-points behind two-time World Champion Jorge Prado.
Glenn Coldenhoff is feeling confident about the upcoming round. After winning the Qualifying Race and almost reaching the podium at last year’s MXGP of Portugal, ‘The Hoff’ is determined to make his mark this weekend.
At the same time, Jeremy Seewer is eager to bounce back after a challenging start to the season. The Swiss rider, who won an MX2 Grand Prix in Agueda in 2017, aims to improve his current ninth position in the championship standings. With renewed focus and determination, Seewer is ready to put his YZ450FM back in the championship hunt.
In the MX2 class, title-favourite Geerts leads with a 22-point advantage over Andrea Adamo, while Thibault Benistant is just one point further adrift in third position and keen to excel on the orange clay of Agueda. Rick Elzinga, meanwhile, is working his way back to full fitness and is determined to break into the top 10 in the Championship Standings. He is currently 11th, 9-points shy of 10th.
Adding to the thrill of this weekend, the EMX250 and EMX125 championships’ will line up for their third rounds, with Hutten Metaal Yamaha Official EMX250’s Andrea Bonacorsi, Ivano van Erp, and Karlis Reisulis fighting to maintain their strong standings. Bonacorsi leads the EMX250 title charge, having won three out of four races this season, while Van Erp and Reisulis hold fifth and eighth positions after solid rookie campaign starts.
In the EMX125 class, MJC Yamaha Official EMX125’s Janis Reisulis is keen on extending his lead after a dominant win in Trentino, while Sergio Perez continues to fill in for the injured Julius Mikula, aiming to showcase his potential on the works GYTR kitted YZ125.
2nd MXGP World Championship Standings, 184-points
“I had a good weekend off, just training for the Grand Prix in Portugal to be fit and ready. I am happy to hear there will be some changes to the track this year because I think it’s always good to have new sections that make it more interesting for everybody. I don’t have any good memories from Portugal in the past, so this year, the goal is to make some good ones, and I am feeling fit and confident coming off two good GP’s. I am not putting too much pressure on myself, but the goal will be to push for a podium or a victory.”
7th MXGP World Championship Standings, 120-points
“I always like the track in Portugal, although I am not sure it’s a good idea to turn it around. It seems like when they turn the track around, it gets worse. It is nice to ride a changed track, but they need to do a really good job of it to get good flow and create more passing possibilities. Last year I won Qualifying Race and got fourth overall for the Grand Prix, so this year the goal will be to finish on the podium.”
9th MXGP World Championship Standings, 107-points
“My weekend off was nice, but tough. I’m training really hard at the moment, pushing to bounce back. Mentally, I am ready. The past is the past. I’m looking ahead and pushing really hard to be back where I want to be. I have good memories from Agueda. I won a GP there in MX2. It was one of my best ever. It will be interesting with the changes to the track. This will be something new for everyone and cool. My goal is to have a lot of fun, find my rhythm and be consistent all weekend without any drama.”
MX2 Championship Leader, 205-points
“I had a relaxed weekend and took Sunday off to recharge the batteries to be ready for a good week of training before Portugal. I like the track in Agueda, and it will be nice to ride the track in a different direction. This will make it new for everyone, so that makes it more exciting.”
3rd MX2 World Championship, 182-points
“I had a good week back home in the South of France, spending time with family, and it was nice to ride in nice weather. It’s quite a nice track in Portugal. I always enjoy riding there, so I look forward to it. The goal this weekend will be to start up front and fight for a place on the box.”
11th MX2 World Championship, 76-points
“I raced the Dutch Masters in the weekend ‘off’, so it wasn’t really a weekend off, but I made good progress which is a sign I’m heading in the right direction. I had a lot of fun on the bike, which feels like it has been a while since I felt that way, so I am looking to keep this feeling and build on that. I’ve been working hard since Sardinia to get back in shape physically and mentally so I hope it starts paying off soon.”