Solid first GP in Turkey for Gebben van Venrooy Yamaha
After a break in the MXGP calendar, the Gebben van Venrooy Yamaha team travelled to Turkey for the first of a double header Grand Prix.
The man made circuit was fast but also presented plenty of ruts and bumps for the riders at round eight of the MXGP series.
The first moto went well for Belgian talent, Brent van Doninck with the summer break meaning he could fully recover from his broken ribs and it showed in his riding. After starting in fifteenth he was able to secure a solid fourteenth spot at a track that was difficult to overtake at.
Things didn’t go so well for Calvin Vlaanderen or Kevin Strijbos in the opening moto. Both riders got caught up in a pile up on the second lap which is far from ideal. The collision was worse for Strijbos who had bent the bars and after riding in last to try and gain track knowledge decided to pull out. Vlaanderen was on the charge and was able to come back to eighteenth to secure three vital points.
The second moto went really well for all three riders as they finished inside the top ten. All three riders were in and around the top ten off the start which makes life a lot easier but in the end Vlaanderen finished a strong eighth with Strijbos ninth and Van Doninck in tenth. All three riders in the top ten is encouraging signs.
The team will now prepare for the second MXGP event at Turkey on Wednesday and will be hoping for more top ten results.
"The first GP in Turkey is done, it was a DNF and a ninth. In the first moto I crashed by myself bent the handlebar, came in to repair it quick but rode all race by myself in 25th place. After the leaders lapped me I tried to follow them a bit to see some lines before pulling off with five laps to go. In the second moto I got a great start, I think I was in sixth. A few guys passed me but I felt I was riding well and the speed was okay so I finished ninth. I am happy about that one for sure. It felt good to finally having a good start and ride with the top guys. Wednesday we can do it all over again here."
"Overall I’m satisfied with my day. On paper it doesn’t look great, but my riding and feeling was good. I struggled a bit in time practice. In the first race I was in twelfth off the start but then went down with another rider on the second lap. I was dead last and fought back to eighteenth. The second race I had a bit of a better start and had a good flow to finish in eighth. I've got a good feeling going into Wednesday for the second GP here in Turkey."
"It was a good day and I am really happy with the progress. It was way better than the last rounds. Due to the summer break, I had time to train again a little bit more and to recover more from my broken ribs. This is behind me now and my ribs feel good again with no pain. I could give it my all again and you could see it in my results as well, I think. Let's keep going like this because this is where I want to be – around the top ten. Let's go again on Wednesday."
Photo credit: Bavo