WATSON FIFTH IN FRONT OF HOME CROWD.
Monster Energy Kemea Yamaha rider Ben Watson finished fifth in front of his home crowd at the Grand Prix of Great Britain, the second round of the FIM MX2 World Championship. Teammate Jago Geerts was ninth on the spectacular circuit of Matterley Basin.
Watson - supported by a lot of British fans - and Geerts started the weekend strongly with a third and seventh place in the qualifying race on Saturday. But the two Kemea Yamaha riders could not take advantage of those good starting positions. Ben was eighth in the first corner of the first race, Geerts only thirteenth. The Brit moved up to fifth place after a strong first lap, but went down when he attacked Jacobi. Watson dropped back to ninth place and then struggled to get back into the right rhythm. The Brit regrouped at the end and was able was able to remount his YZ250F in fourth place. Geerts made a few too many mistakes on the hard and tricky track. The Belgian teenager was stuck in 16th place.
The starts in the second race were not great either. Geerts was eighth in the first corner, Watson only twelfth. The two Kemea Yamaha riders soon came together and rode to fifth and sixth place. The rise of Geerts, however, was stopped by a small mistake, including a fall. Jago dropped a few places, but quickly recovered and was able to take sixth place, just behind teammate Watson.
Watson moved up to fifth in the MX2 world championship classification, while Geerts holds ninth place.
"My two races were completely different. The first one was just not good enough. I crashed twice: the first time I didn't see a rut properly and went down. A bit later, I was touched by another ride and hit the soil again. Frustrating. My second race was a lot better. I felt much more at ease and I was able to move quickly into fifth place. Unfortunately, I made a mistake, fell and lost some places. Luckily, I managed to come back to sixth place. Ninth overall is not great, but we need to stay calm. The riding itself is good, I just need a bit of luck."
"Fifth place is not really bad, but I expected more this weekend. So I'm quite disappointed. In the first race I had a mediocre start and made up many places in the first lap. But then I went down and couldn't find a good rhythm again. I had a terrible start in the second race and it took me a long time to find the right rhythm. Very frustrating, because I know I'm capable of fighting for the podium. I'm not happy with the result, but should not dramatize. The season is very long. New race next week, new chances."
"The starts were not good, unlike on Saturday in the qualifying race. Why? Gosh, hard to say. Maybe it's a mental issue. They have to go to the start with a little more confidence. We should not be too negative. Of course, this was not a good race from our boys, but certainly not a bad one either. Just mediocre. Both Ben and Jago showed some nice things at times. Watson was pretty strong in the first race, Geerts was the better one in the second race. Next week we will go to the sand in Valkenswaard. A surface that suits our riders."
1. Thomas Kjer Olsen (Den/Hus)
2. Henry Jacobi (Ger/Kaw) +0:04.278
3. Tom Vialle (Fra/KTM) +0:16.160
4. BEN WATSON (GBr/Yam) +0:28.500
5. Michele Cervellin (Ita) Yam) +0:30.179
16. JAGO GEERTS (Bel/Yam) +1:07.004
1. Thomas Kjer Olsen (Den/Hus)
2. Calvin Vlaanderen (Ned/Hon) +0:09.936
3. Henry Jacobi (Ger/Kaw) +0:16.035
4. Tom Vialle (Fra/KTM) +0:16.160
5. BEN WATSON (GBr/Yam) +0:20.044
6. JAGO GEERTS (Bel/Yam) +0:38.635
1. Thomas Kjer Olsen (Den/Hus) 50
2. Henry Jacobi (Ger/Kaw) 42
3. Tom Vialle (Fra/KTM) 38
4. Calvin Vlaanderen (Ned/Hon) 35
5. BEN WATSON (GBr/Yam) 34
9. JAGO GEERTS (Bel/Yam) 20
World championship classification:
1. Thomas Kjer Olsen (Den/Hus) 94
2. Henry Jacobi (Ger/Kaw) 78
3. Calvin Vlaanderen (Ned/Hon) 71
4. Tom Vialle (Fra/KTM) 65
5. BEN WATSON (GBr/Yam) 63
9. JAGO GEERTS (Bel/Yam) 45
Next race: March 31, GP3 Valkenswaard (Ned)