Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP’s Jeremy Seewer and Glenn Coldenhoff finished sixth and eighth overall at the MXGP of Turkey, round eight of the FIM Motocross World Championship, after a hot and challenging day at the Afyon Motor Center. Ben Watson finished 21st.
Fast out of the blocks in Timed Training, Coldenhoff was feeling fast and confident on the Turkish clay. The Dutchman, who finished second overall at the most recent Grand Prix here in Afyon back in 2019, qualified strongly in second position, while teammates Seewer and Watson had a tough morning out on track and only mustered up enough speed for the 14th and 22nd gate picks.
Coldenhoff and Seewer powered their YZ450FMs to excellent starts, although Seewer was bumped off course after a rider on the inside of him made a mistake. As Seewer fought to keep his bike on two wheels, Coldenhoff challenged the lead.
The Dutchman crossed the line on the opening lap in third position, but after suffering some arm-pump, he could not ride to his full potential and ended up fading back to the eighth position. Meanwhile, despite suffering from the Epstein Barr Virus, Seewer showed his determination as he bounced back from his first turn woes to finish seventh.
Hoping for more in the second race of the day, Coldenhoff made some changes to his YZ450FM and after a top-five start, he instantly felt that it handled much better. The ‘259’ ran the pace of the front-runners for the first six laps before a small mistake ruined the fruit of his labour, and he ended up finishing the race in 11th position.
Seewer continued to battle hard and managed to wrap up the day with another solid ride from 10th off the start to seventh at the flag.
As for Ben Watson, the 24-year-old rookie worked to find a basic set-up that would give him added confidence on the hard, slick and choppy Turkish clay course. The Brit was desperate to improve his pace, but regardless of his efforts, he was unable to gel with the track and only managed to finish 20th in Race 1 and 19th in Race 2.
All three Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP riders hope to raise their game ahead of the next Grand Prix, which will take place on the same circuit here in Afyon, Turkey, in two days’ time – on Wednesday 7th September.
6th MXGP of Turkey, 28-points
6th MXGP Championship Standings, 234-points
“As I mentioned in the preview, I am not where I want to be, so I just need to turn up and try and that’s all I can do. If I was better in Timed Practice, I would have had a better day because my starts were amazing today. I was just far outside. I think in both motos, I could have got for the holeshot if I would be on the inside. I lacked energy in the morning, and that was my disadvantage today, going to the gate in P.14. I made the most out of the situation, but in the second moto, the track was one-lined and super hard to pass. Under the circumstances, I collected good points, and I am still here and racing and not feeling too bad, so now I will take a couple of days rest, do some recovery and see where I can improve for Wednesday.”
8th MXGP of Turkey, 23-points
8th MXGP Championship Standings, 197-points
“My day started good. I got second in Timed Practice and felt good. The track was still very wet and I like those conditions. In the first moto, I got arm-pump on lap-2 and rode tight. It went from bad to worse. I started in third and ended up finishing eighth, which was not good. We tried to work on some things before the second moto. It definitely worked out better, and in the second race, I was feeling quite okay; I could keep the pace with the front guys, but then I made a small crash and I pushed really hard in the end, but the track is very one-lined. Everyone was taking this line which made it very difficult to make some passes.”
21st MXGP of Turkey, 3-points
10th MXGP Championship Standings, 133-points
“I have not enjoyed today, if I am honest. Even from the first lap, I did on this track, I did not like the track, but what option did I have? It’s the same for everyone. I needed to get over that feeling and work with it. I changed a lot of things today because, honestly, I didn’t feel like I could do worse. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get a connection with the track, and it was hard to enjoy when you are riding in a position that is not where you should be. I know it’s my problem, and I need to work on this personally and do better on Wednesday. It’s that simple.”