Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP’s Jeremy Seewer finished the 2019 MXGP season as the championship runner-up after celebrating the eighteenth and final round of the series in Shanghai, China, on the third step of the podium. Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha MXGP’s Gautier Paulin finished seventh in the Chinese Grand Prix classification and ended up fourth overall in the championship.
In race one, Seewer got off to a fantastic start and was able to challenge for the lead on the opening three laps before high siding spectacularly after a rock hit his goggles hard enough to split his eyelid. As the Swiss rider remounted his YZ450FM inside the top-five, Paulin tried to find his form after he was shuffled back to eighth despite a decent start to the race.
With blood from the eyelid injury affecting his vision, Seewer fell a second time but still made an inspirational recovery to finish fourth after passing former MX2 World Champion Pauls Jonass with 10-minutes left on the clock. Paulin could not find his usual rhythm and labored home eighth.
The pressure of the championship had been completely lifted for Seewer going into the final race of the season after he scored enough points to secure the silver medal in race one. The ’91’ pulled an enormous holeshot but instantly lost the lead to the race one winner, Glenn Coldenhoff. Never one to back off the throttle, the 25-year-old established his speed and skill as he kept Coldenhoff in his sights while defending a hasty Jeffrey Herlings.
With 8 minutes remaining, Herlings nudged Seewer back to third position, which is where he finished, while Paulin had to fight hard to move up into sixth after starting eighth.
Both teams missed some representation at the inaugural Chinese Grand Prix. Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha MXGP’s Arnaud Tonus had to withdraw after sustaining a minor fracture to his left hand in the Qualifying Race yesterday, while Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP’s Romain Febvre was not in attendance after he suffered a broken Femur at Swedish Grand Prix three-weeks ago. Tonus still ended his 2019 MXGP season in fifth overall, while Febvre was classified ninth despite missing six rounds.
Between the two teams and four riders, Yamaha and the YZ450F celebrated a whopping 21 podium finishes in 2019.
Both Seewer and Paulin will now shift their focus to the biggest event of the season, the Monster Energy FIM Motocross of Nations in Assen, The Netherlands, where Seewer will spearhead the efforts of Team Switzerland, while Gautier Paulin will lead the defending champions, Team France.
An update on Tonus’ injury will be shared on our social media platforms, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram when available.
3rd MXGP Overall, 2nd MXGP Championship Classification
“It has been incredible. My winter preparation for this season was horrible. I was in bed sick for three weeks. I came into the season battling to be in the top-ten and I had to fight my way back. I am really happy to be here now. It was a process, I started to break into the top five after the few weeks we had off in May, and then eventually got on the podium and then got six podiums and now I am here, second in the world!”
7th MXGP Overall, 4th MXGP Championship Classification
“I really want to thank my team first of all, Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha MXGP team. We have had a tough season and have worked hard all year long as a satellite team. We were fighting for second in the championship to begin with and then second, and then third, and finally we came up short in fourth. It was a good year for my first year back on the Yamaha. We have some experience for the future. The bike was working good today, although it was not the best day for me. I am happy I put in a full season without injuries and could fight to the finish.”