Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MX2’s Jago Geerts showed his true grit and determination at the ninth round of the FIM Motocross World Championship in Madrid, Spain. After a heavy fall, the 22-year-old Belgian star salvaged ninth in Race 1 and finished second in Race 2 after another small error. He was classified third overall. Thibault Benistant also had to overcome adversity. The Frenchman finished fifth and seventh for sixth overall after hitting the gate in Race 1 and crashing in Race 2.
Hutten Metaal Yamaha Official EMX250’s Rick Elzinga powered his GYTR kitted YZ250F to a mind-blowing holeshot in Race 1 but was quickly shuffled back to third by the two main championship protagonists, Geerts and Tom Vialle. Unfortunately, soon after taking the lead, Geerts suffered a spectacular crash through the waves in which he knocked the wind out of his lungs.
After catching his breath, Geerts bravely remounted his YZ250FM and re-joined the race in last position, and then put in an awe-inspiring performance to finish ninth.
At the same time, Thibault Benistant fought back from a poor start to finish fifth, while Elzinga proved his potential by running fourth in the first half of the race but was battling illness and eventually faded back to 13th. Meanwhile, his Hutten Metaal Yamaha Official EMX250’s wild-card entry Andrea Bonacorsi posted a career-best MX2 finish in eighth.
Motivated to bounce back in the second and final race of the weekend, Geerts got another great start and quickly stole the lead from fellow countryman Liam Everts. But, while the Yamaha man was the fastest on track, evidenced by lap times, he ended up second at the flag after a minor crash on lap-7.
As for Benistant, the French ace charged back to an impressive seventh position after falling at turn four on the opening lap.
Bonacorsi was 20th in Race 2, which was still enough for 13th overall, while Elzinga withdrew from the Grand Prix after Race 1 through illness.
Geerts has dropped to second in the MX2 Championship Standinings but remains within 10-points of the new championship leader, Vialle, while Benistant has moved up into 10th.
The MXGP of Spain was the first of three back-to-back Grands Prix. The next round of the FIM Motocross World Championship will take place in Ernee, France on the weekend of June 5th.
3rd MXGP of Spain, 34-points
2nd MX2 Championship Standings, 372-points
“It was quite a difficult day today. In the first heat, I got the holeshot but then had a massive crash. I still came back to ninth, but it was quite difficult because my handlebars were bent. I didn’t have a good feeling but started to feel a bit better at the end of the race. In the second race, I took the holeshot again, which is always a good thing, and was leading again but made a small mistake. I still finished second, so I did some good damage control this weekend, and I am still happy with the podium.”
6th MXGP of Spain, 30-points
10th MX2 Championship Standings, 183-points
“I did not get the result I expected today, but the riding was way better than it has been since I came back racing. So, there are plenty of positives to take away and these are the things I will focus on going into my home GP in Ernee next weekend.”