GEERTS BACK ON THE PODIUM
Monster Energy Kemea Yamaha rider Jago Geerts finished second (2+5) at the penultimate round of the FIM World Championship MX2, in Afyonkarahisar, Turkey. His sixth podium of the season, his first since the Grand Prix in Latvia, mid June.
Geerts felt good on the hard pack and rutted Turkish track. The Belgian was fifth in time practice and improved one more place in the qualifying race on Saturday, which offered him a decent gate pick on Sunday.
Jago had a great start on his YZ250F in the first race. He was right behind world champion Prado and Renaux in the first corner. Vialle - in fourth place - was putting a lot of pressure on Geerts, but the Belgian responded well to the attacks of the Frenchman. Jago was handed the second place, when Renaux crashed in the third lap. Geerts kept a good pace and didn't allow Vialle to come back into his rear wheel. In contrary, the Frenchman started to suffer and lost a few places. Meanwhile Renaux came back on Geerts, but his first attack resulted in another crash.
Geerts took another blistering start - behind holeshotter Prado - in the second race, but was struggling on the heavily watered track. He was riding too carefully and dropped to sixth place. It took Geerts 20 minutes to find a good rhythm. He passed Vlaanderen and finished fifth.
Geerts gained three more points on Vialle and now has a ten point advantage over the Frenchman. The battle for the bronze medal will be decided in Shanghai, China next weekend.
"It feels good to be back on the podium after some difficult races. It was a really good weekend for me. I'm especially happy with my first race: good start, good pace and a second place. I also had a good start in the second race, but was a bit too cautious on the freshly watered track and lost some places. Luckily, fifth place was enough for second place overall. I'm looking forward to next week. I want to finish the season strong."
"Jago's first race was almost perfect. His second race wasn't at the same level. He was riding to careful, looked insecure on the watered track. But he responded well in the end. Jago needed a decent weekend, without crashing. This second place is a confidence boost. He's now ten points ahead of Vialle. A small gap. The fight for bronze will continue until the last race of the season".
1. Jorge Prado (Esp/KTM)
2. JAGO GEERTS (BEL/YAM) +0:21.779
3. Calvin Vlaanderen (Ned/Hon) +0.27.688
4. Maxime Renaux (Fra/Yam) +0:30.059
5. Roan Van De Moosdijk (Ned/Kaw) +0:31.774
1. Jorge Prado (Esp/KTM)
2. Tom Vialle (Fra/KTM) +0:10.178
3. Roan Van De Moosdijk (Ned/Kaw) +0:11.960
4. Maxime Renaux (Fra/Yam) +0:13.700
5. JAGO GEERTS (BEL/YAM) +0:16.381
1. Jorge Prado (Esp/KTM) 50
2. JAGO GEERTS (BEL/YAM) 38
3. Roan Van De Moosdijk (Ned/Kaw) 36
4. Maxime Renaux (Fra/Yam) 36
5. Tom Vialle (Fra/KTM) 35
World championship classification:
1. Jorge Prado (Esp/KTM) 787
2. Thomas Kjer Olsen (Den/Hus) 592
3. JAGO GEERTS (BEL/YAM) 505
4. Tom Vialle (Fra/KTM) 495
5. Henry Jacobi (Ger/Kaw) 442
10. BEN WATSON (GBR/YAM) 282
Next race: September 15, GP18 Shanghai (Chn).