After a three-week break in the calendar, MXGP will return to action this weekend at Loket in the Czech Republic, the same venue that saw Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jeremy Van Horebeek claim his first ever Grand Prix victory back in 2014. The familiar track has hosted 20 Grand Prixes since 1995 and will host the thirteenth round of the 2017 FIM Motocross World Championship this weekend where both YZ450FM riders Jeremy Van Horebeek and Romain Febvre will be aiming for a spot on the podium.
Loket is a classic style track that embodies plenty of steep up-hills, and as many daunting down-hills. The compound of the track is classed as ‘blue-groove’ clay which means tyre selection and throttle control will be of the essence. The track is located 130km west of the countries capital – Prague – and has been etched into the hillside of Loket – a quaint medieval village that has been made famous by its role in the blockbuster hit – James Bond 007 Casino Royale – back in 2006.
Renowned for their impeccable throttle control, Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing’s Romain Febvre and Jeremy Van Horebeek will both be podium contenders this weekend, as will the rookie Wilvo Yamaha Official MXGP’s Arnaud Tonus. Febvre is currently in sixth position in the MXGP championship chase, only 1-point shy of the defending MXGP World Champion Tim Gajser, who is fifth. After missing two rounds of the championship due to a broken finger, Van Horebeek is tied for eighth place with Evgeny Bobryshev, while Tonus is only 14-points back in tenth.
6th MXGP Championship Standings, 309-points
“I feel good at this moment; I have been riding a lot on the hard pack to prepare for Loket. Everything is going well. I don’t like Loket that much, but normally I ride pretty good there. Hopefully it is prepared well, and we will see how it goes.”
Jeremy Van Horebeek
8th MXGP Championship Standings, 267-points
“I feel good. It’s been 3-weeks since Portugal and I am just happy to be back on the gate. I am feeling confident and also the team is confident. We have tried some new stuff out and we will use it this weekend and see how it goes. I really like the track in Loket, I won there in 2014. I like hard and slick tracks, they suit me. This doesn’t mean that it will be the same, but I think that it can be a good weekend if everything goes to plan, so I look forward to it.”
10th MXGP Championship Standings, 253-points
“I like the track in Loket, it is definitely a track that suits me. I like the hard and slick surfaces, so I am definitely looking forward to this weekend and racing the new 2018 YZ450F. All I need is a couple of good starts to put myself in the position to challenge for the podium. It should be a good weekend.”