Once again, Italy was the host of an MXGP round, but this time in the sands of Sardegna. Quite the contrast in track surface and atmosphere than last weekend in Maggiora. Regardless, Tim Gajser has reached comical levels of dominance this season through seven rounds. That alone has made the MX2 title, which has by all accounts been excellent to this point, the more interesting title fight of the two. Jago Geerts entered the weekend up six points on Tom Vialle after a big 1-2 day a week ago. How could he capitalize seven days later?
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MXGP Weekly News
A couple of notable pieces of information to get to before Sunday’s action. First of which is the promotion of Mattia Guadagnini to the MXGP class which started this weekend. The Italian had not had the best start in the MX2 class, but Claudio De Carli feels good enough about his guy to make this move. Here is part of what he had to say on the early jump.
“This transition was planned for next season, but we are all convinced that it is a good solution to make the move immediately. In MXGP [Guadagnini] will not have to worry about the results. There are 13 rounds to race, in which he can become familiar with the 450 and thus prepare himself as best as possible for 2023.”
Next up is some injury news for a current MX2 mainstay. Earlier in the week, Husqvarna’s Kay De Wolf, unfortunately, suffered a fractured hand as a result of being hit by a car while cycling. The best news here is that De Wolf is fine otherwise, but he obviously will miss some time as a result. Entering this weekend, he was just shy of third place in the MX2 Championship.
MX2 Class Recap
Thibault Benistant, who missed the opening three rounds of the year began to really heat up this weekend. He picked up the holeshot in Moto 1 over Geerts, Kevin Horgmo, and Conrad Mewse, among others. Geerts ended up sneaking into the lead by the end of lap one, while further on back, Vialle rallied from a middle pack start to end up in second by lap two, after a battle with Benistant. The start ultimately decided things, as Vialle couldn’t track down Geerts, who picked up his eighth Moto win of the season here.
Moto 2 ended up being somewhat inverse of the opening slate when it came to the two title combatants. Benistant once again got the holeshot, but this time it was Vialle up in the top three early with Geerts having a subpar start. Right at the end of the second straightaway, Liam Everts took a spill but ended up taking Simon Laengenfelder with him. The pair would end up finishing eighth and seventh respectively in this Moto, and ninth and sixth in the overall standings as well.
The one area where this differed from Moto 1, was that Geerts made things very interesting at the very end. After sending it in on the final corner of the race, he was only a half bike length back of Vialle, but he didn’t have enough, maybe if he had another lap it could have been a different story. Vialle meanwhile got the Grand Prix victory as a result of the better Moto 2, finish, however, he gained no points on Geerts.
MX2 Class Top 10 Results
1st No. 28 Tom Vialle 2-1
2nd No. 93 Jago Geerts 1-2
3rd No. 189 Thibault Benistant 3-3
4th No. 24 Kevin Horgmo 5-4
5th No. 80 Andrea Adamo 7-6
6th No. 516 Simon Laengenfelder 6-7
7th No. 517 Isak Gifting 9-5
8th No. 11 Mikkel Haarup 5-11
9th No. 72 Liam Everts 10-8
10th No. 403 Bastian Boegh Damm 12-9
MXGP Class Recap
Gajser picked up his second holeshot of the season, as a fall from Maxime Renaux jumbled up several riders in the middle of the field in turn one. All was not lost for the defending MX2 Champion, as he stormed through the field to get a well-deserved sixth. The real stunner of the Moto, probably the season rather, was the run of Calvin Vlaanderen. After a seventh-place start, he found himself in fifth around midway. From there he put on the ride of his life, straight up passing Jeremy Seewer, Pauls Jonass, Jorge Prado, and then Gajser for the lead and win. One of the more stunning wins in the GPs in recent memory. Perhaps since Max Anstie won a moto over Jeffrey Herlings in Turkey a few years ago.
Prado, who had a great weekend after missing last week, picked up his seventh holeshot of the year with several riders going down, in turn, one behind the pack. For the first race of the year, this was not a good result for Gajser. The current points leader started around sixth and couldn’t make up any ground in the opening half of the race. Then he made his first costly mistake of the year, going down on a split section turn jump trying to get around Jonass. As a result, he finished outside the top 10 in a Moto for the first time all year, as well as outside the top two of a Grand Prix.
The lap after Gajser went down, Vlaanderen struck again, getting by Prado to get into the lead again in Sardegna. Once again, he would not surrender it after he got it, and the Dutchman picked up one of the biggest MXGP upsets in recent memory. For the Gebben Van Venrooy Yamaha rider, this is his first Grand Prix win since 2018 in Indonesia as an MX2 rider.
MXGP Class Top 10 Results
1st No. 10 Calvin Vlaanderen 1-1
2nd No. 61 Jorge Prado 3-3
3rd No. 259 Glenn Coldenhoff 8-2
4th No. 959 Maxime Renaux 6-4
5th No. 91 Jeremy Seewer 4-6
6th No. 189 Brian Bogers 5-5
7th No. 243 Tim Gajser 2-12
8th No. 101 Mattia Guadagnini 11-8
9th No. 89 Jeremy Van Horebeek 10-9
10th No. 41 Pauls Jonass 9-10
Follow Jack Gaffney on Twitter @JackGaffneyPTST
Main Image Credit: Embed from Getty Images