The day began with a special parade lap that featured former FIM Motocross World Championship legends such as Harry Everts, Joel Smets, John van den Berk, Marnicq Bervoets, Jacky Martens, Marc Velkeneers, Peter Herlings, Gerrit Wolsink, Gerard Rond, Gertjan van Doorn, Edwin Evertsen and Johan Boonen.
Then it was time for racing and to put it simply, the Dutch Grand Prix, as always, did not disappoint.
In MXGP, all eyes were on Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jeffrey Herlings and Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing’s Glenn Coldenhoff who were starting the races from first and second positions.
In race one, it was Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team’s Romain Febvre who grabbed the Fox Holeshot, though Coldenhoff was not looking to waste any time as he jumped into the lead.
He then led Febvre, Team HRC’s Tim Gajser, Herlings and Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jeremy Seewer.
Herlings then took a hard hit from Ivo Monticelli of Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team, though miraculously was able to carry on, while Monticelli crashed.
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Arminas Jasikonis was having a good ride in 11th place to score his first points of the season.
But the action in front is what had our attention as Febvre was looking for every possible way to get around Coldenhoff.
The pair kept the intensity high from the beginning, while Gajser rode smart, taking his time in the background.
As the gap shrunk to 0.359 it looked like Febvre was finally going to get around the Dutchman, but instead the Frenchman made a mistake which saw him crash, costing him valuable time. He did however re-join pretty quickly and was down in third.
With less than 10 minutes to go, it looked like Coldenhoff was starting to fade a little as Gajser, Febvre and Herlings closed in on him. Febvre then got Gajser for second and got onto the back wheel of Coldenhoff’s Yamaha once again.
Herlings then muscled his way past Gajser and not long after was all over Febvre. With 2 minutes plus two laps to go, Herlings was already in front of Febvre who crashed and within striking distance of Coldenhoff.
The chase was on and with 3 laps to go, Herlings became the new race leader going on to win the first race with Coldenhoff second and Gajser third.
The second race saw carnage in the start which saw riders like Coldenhoff and Seewer, among others, go down, while Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jorge Prado got the holeshot and led the way. Febvre was second with Gajser third.
Due to the incident in the opening race, Herlings did not line-up for the second heat as he travelled to hospital to confirm his shoulder injury. His return to racing is unknown for the moment.
As Febvre looked to push Prado for the lead, he made a costly mistake which saw him go off track on a side of a jump. He re-joined the race in 6th ahead of Jasikonis.
Prado then led Gajser by 2.342 seconds, with Standing Construct GasGas Factory Racing’s Brian Bogers having a strong ride in third place.
Seewer and Coldenhoff struggled to come back from their crashes, with Seewer managing a top 10 finish in race two, while Coldenhoff placed down in 22nd, missing out on championship points.
Febvre worked his way back up the order as he passed Ben Watson of Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing for 5th place, as Gajser closed the gap down to Prado.
Cairoli then put a large charge in the race as he got around Bogers for third and set his sights on Gajser and Prado ahead.
Prado did a good job at keeping Gajser at bay until the final three laps of the race, when the Team HRC rider was able to get around the Spaniard. Prado then seemed to have faded as Cairoli was able to get around him too.
The 9-time World Champion then stepped it up another gear and caught out Gajser who maybe did not expect to have him right there. With less than half a lap to go, Cairoli took away the lead and went on to win the second MXGP race in Oss. Gajser was second and Prado third.
In terms of the podium, it was Gajser who took the overall win, with Cairoli finishing second and Febvre placing third, with two solid 4th place finishes.
Gajser continues to lead the championship with 166 points, with Herlings, Cairoli and Febvre tied on 143 points just behind him.
Tim Gajser said: “First race I was quite happy with third place, and I didn’t want to take any risks as the track was sketchy.
“In the second race I took a good start, I was behind Prado the whole race but he was blocking all the lines but then I managed to pass him with a couple of laps from the end but I lost all my energy before and Tony passed me on the last lap.
“I was trying to hold him, but he had better lines and anyway I am very happy with the overall.”
Antonio Cairoli said: “Yeah I was very disappointed about that first race because I know I have a good condition; I could ride good in this track. I am not the best in the sand for sure, but I felt I could do more.
“But after that first race, I was losing hope because I had a bad start. I was around 15th in the first corner and then of course Ivo crashed, and I lost a few positions so I was really struggling to find a rhythm.
“I spent a lot of energy to try to overtake the guys and then I arrived at the back of Jorge and I almost passed him but then I made a small mistake, I crashed and lost positions so I was not really happy about it.
“But second one I knew I had to stay away from trouble in the first lap. Towards the end of the race the guys in front were a little tired at the end, so after I passed Jorge I said I’ll go for the win.
“I have to give it everything and try to win because I still had energy and it worked so I am looking forward to another GP.
“I was not really a hard pack guy but lately, I am really enjoying it more than before. I also found a good setup on the bike. Before I was struggling more.
“So, I am looking forward to Loket. For sure it is not one of my favourite tracks but I am looking forward to those hard pack races and hopefully we have some public again because it is very nice to ride in front of the public. That’s why we are there, racing.”
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RESULTS & STANDINGS:
MXGP – Grand Prix Race 1 – Top 10 Classification:
- Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 36:28.182; 2. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, Yamaha), +0:02.563; 3. Tim Gajser (SLO, Honda), +0:05.559; 4. Romain Febvre (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:11.495; 5. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Yamaha), +0:22.231; 6. Jorge Prado (ESP, KTM), +0:38.861; 7. Pauls Jonass (LAT, GASGAS), +0:46.584; 8. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), +0:48.838; 9. Ben Watson (GBR, Yamaha), +0:50.585; 10. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, Yamaha), +0:58.409.
MXGP – Grand Prix Race 2 – Top 10 Classification:
- Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 34:37.324; 2. Tim Gajser (SLO, Honda), +0:03.782; 3. Jorge Prado (ESP, KTM), +0:05.573; 4. Romain Febvre (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:06.707; 5. Brian Bogers (NED, GASGAS), +0:26.103; 6. Ben Watson (GBR, Yamaha), +0:30.792; 7. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, Yamaha), +0:39.106; 8. Arminas Jasikonis (LTU, Husqvarna), +0:42.921; 9. Brent Van doninck (BEL, Yamaha), +0:44.610; 10. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Yamaha), +0:45.341.
MXGP – GP Top 10 Classification:
- Tim Gajser (SLO, HON), 42 points; 2. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 38 p.; 3. Romain Febvre (FRA, KAW), 36 p.; 4. Jorge Prado (ESP, KTM), 35 p.; 5. Ben Watson (GBR, YAM), 27 p.; 6. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, YAM), 27 p.; 7. Brian Bogers (NED, GAS), 25 p.; 8. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, YAM), 25 p.; 9. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 25 p.; 10. Arminas Jasikonis (LTU, HUS), 23 p.
MXGP – World Championship Top 10 Classification:
- Tim Gajser (SLO, HON), 166 points; 2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 143 p.; 3. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), 143 p.; 4. Romain Febvre (FRA, KAW), 143 p.; 5. Jorge Prado (ESP, KTM), 132 p.; 6. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, YAM), 113 p.; 7. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, YAM), 104 p.; 8. Pauls Jonass (LAT, GAS), 104 p.; 9. Alessandro Lupino (ITA, KTM), 83 p.; 10. Ben Watson (GBR, YAM), 71 p.
MX2 – Grand Prix Race 1 – Top Classification:
- Jago Geerts (BEL, Yamaha), 35:07.172; 2. Jed Beaton (AUS, Husqvarna), +0:06.279; 3. Roan Van De Moosdijk (NED, Kawasaki), +0:10.512; 4. Rene Hofer (AUT, KTM), +0:24.613; 5. Kay de Wolf (NED, Husqvarna), +0:24.870; 6. Wilson Todd (AUS, Kawasaki), +0:28.899; 7. Isak Gifting (SWE, GASGAS), +0:29.378; 8. Mikkel Haarup (DEN, Kawasaki), +0:29.972; 9. Maxime Renaux (FRA, Yamaha), +0:34.532; 10. Ruben Fernandez (ESP, Honda), +0:38.042.
MX2 – Grand Prix Race 2 – Top 10 Classification:
- Jago Geerts (BEL, Yamaha), 34:37.597; 2. Kay de Wolf (NED, Husqvarna), +0:05.174; 3. Jed Beaton (AUS, Husqvarna), +0:14.273; 4. Maxime Renaux (FRA, Yamaha), +0:19.047; 5. Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, KTM), +0:41.273; 6. Thibault Benistant (FRA, Yamaha), +0:45.271; 7. Ruben Fernandez (ESP, Honda), +0:50.636; 8. Isak Gifting (SWE, GASGAS), +0:57.219; 9. Mikkel Haarup (DEN, Kawasaki), +0:58.383; 10. Rene Hofer (AUT, KTM), +1:04.779.
MX2 – GP Top 10 Classification:
- Jago Geerts (BEL, YAM), 50 points; 2. Jed Beaton (AUS, HUS), 42 p.; 3. Kay de Wolf (NED, HUS), 38 p.; 4. Maxime Renaux (FRA, YAM), 30 p.; 5. Rene Hofer (AUT, KTM), 29 p.; 6. Isak Gifting (SWE, GAS), 27 p.; 7. Ruben Fernandez (ESP, HON), 25 p.; 8. Mikkel Haarup (DEN, KAW), 25 p.; 9. Wilson Todd (AUS, KAW), 24 p.; 10. Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, KTM), 23 p.
MX2 – World Championship Top 10 Classification:
- Maxime Renaux (FRA, YAM), 141 points; 2. Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, KTM), 136 p.; 3. Ruben Fernandez (ESP, HON), 133 p.; 4. Mathys Boisrame (FRA, KAW), 124 p.; 5. Roan Van De Moosdijk (NED, KAW), 119 p.; 6. Jago Geerts (BEL, YAM), 117 p.; 7. Jed Beaton (AUS, HUS), 109 p.; 8. Rene Hofer (AUT, KTM), 108 p.; 9. Thibault Benistant (FRA, YAM), 103 p.; 10. Kay de Wolf (NED, HUS), 87 p.