PM: MXGP of France, MXGP

Seewer rises on top at the MXGP of France while Benistant dominates at his home Grand Prix.

The MXGP of France displayed an incredible and eventful weekend of motocross backed by the loud and cheering French crowd that came to Villars sous Ecot to voice their excitement. 

The 7th round of the 2023 FIM Motocross World Championship was marked by a redesigned circuit prone to increase overtakes and deliver a fantastic show in general. At the end of the day it was Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team’s Jeremy Seewer who got on the top step of the podium for the first time this season while home rider Kawasaki Racing Team’s Romain Febvre managed an emotional second place in his country with a race win. Red plate holder Red Bull GASGAS Factory Racing’s Jorge Prado was back on the podium in third place.

In MX2, Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MX2 Team’s Thibault Benistant made the French public go wild with a dominant first GP win at home. On the second place wasRed Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Andrea Adamo who is edging closer to get the red plate.Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Liam Everts managed a second podium in third place.

The MXGP of France has delivered an outstanding show with many French riders rising up to the occasion to spoil the devoted and passionate French public.

In MXGP race 1, it was Jeremy Seewer who got the fastest start as he clinched his 5th FOX Holeshot of the season. Jorge Prado quickly took the lead of Seewer after few turns while Romain Febvre got to 3rd on lap 1

Seewer demonstrated great qualities on a track that seems to suit him as he made a charge on Prado on lap 5 and took the lead. Seewer kept riding strong and rode to victory for his first race win of the season. Behind the battle for 2nd place raged between Prado, Febvre and Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jeffrey Herlings who placed himself 4th on the turn of lap 1. 

Febvre made a move on Prado and even took the second place for few turns but Prado took his place back right away. It was then the turn of Herlings to show his immense talent as he set the fastest lap mid race and closed on Febvre on lap 12. The speed of the ‘bullet’ was too quick as Herlings passed Febvre for 3rd on lap 12. Herlings’ run was not finished as he continued his effort to put pressure on Prado quickly and managed to pass him on lap 14 with 3 laps to go. Herlings finished the race 2nd while Prado could not keep Febvre behind him on lap 15. Febvre went on to pass Prado to finish 3rd. Prado settled for 4th in the end. 

Team HRC’s Rubén Fernández spent a much less eventful race as the 3rd in the Championship Standing managed to stay 5th throughout the whole race. He was followed byRed Bull GASGAS Factory Racing’s Mattia Guadagnini who also kept his rank into 6th during the race. 

Ship to Cycle Honda SR Motoblouz’s Valentin Guillod showed a good pace as he started at the top but found himself 8th on the turn of lap 1. He managed to capitalise onSM Action Racing Team Yuasa Battery MXGP’s Alberto Foratocrash to get up to 7th. Forato who continued on his marvellous effort from Saturday was 6th when he completely fell off his bike on a jump and unfortunately had to retire from the race. 

Team Gebben Van Venroy Yamaha Racing’s Calvin Vlaanderen made a good start and quickly passed JM Honda Racing’s Brent Van doninckfor 9th and kept a good pace behind Guillod. He eventually also benefitted from Forato misfortune to finish in 8th.  Van doninck keeps showing impressive skill as the Belgian rode solidly into the top 10 the whole race to settle 10th in the end.

The great performance of the race went to Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team’s Glenn Coldenhoffas the Dutch rider did not start well and found himself 13th on lap 1 but eventually picked up his rhythm to overtake MRT Racing Team Beta’s Ben Watson

MRT Racing Team Beta’s Alessandro Lupino andStanding Construct Honda MXGP’s Brian Bogers early on to get to 11th on lap 3. He kept going to get to a good 9th place. Lupino settled for 13th in the end.

Race 2 started similarly to race 1 with Seewer clinching the FOX Holeshot and kept going with the lead. It looked like he was going for the perfect 1-1 but Febvre was determined to win his first race of the season at home. Febvre took his time but managed to get on the back of Seewer with the home crowd on their toes waiting for that moment. On lap 12, Febvre got on the inside of the Swiss and go through in a turn to let public erupt of excitement. With 6 laps to go it was a done deal as Febvre managed to enjoy the last lap and celebrate with his famous heel clicker. Seewer was happy to get 1-2 for his GP win of the season. 

Prado went to ride strongly and throughout the whole race in 3rd position getting an excellent 4-3 to get up to the podium. Prado knew that getting these points were vital after the Herlings retirement of the race on lap 3 as he had a disastrous chain of events. The GP wins record man first got a problem with his goggles that broke and hindered his vision. Following a stop to the goggle lane to change them, Herlings had already a mountain climb when on the following lap his foot peg also broke on a landing. This unlikely series of bad luck got him to retire from race 2 and miss on vital points for the championship. 

Fernandez experienced another quiet but succesfull race as he managed to keep his 4th place from start to finish for a consistent 5-4 to bring good points along the way. Similarly Vlaanderen also went 5th on lap 1 and kept his rank until the end to go 8-5 for a good 5th overall. Coldenhoff also showed good speed in this second race as he managed to pass the always consistent Guillod on lap 9 to finish 6th in the end. Guillod settled for 7th. 

Van doninck is another efficient rider that is showing a lot of great ridings so far this season as he finished 8th for 8th overall. Riding at home seemed to suit Paturel as he finished 9th while showing very skills on this demanding track.

It was a good overall Grand Prix for KTM Kosak Team’s Tom Koch who emerged in the top 10 with 5 laps to go as he went from 14th on lap 1 to finish in 10th position. With a 14-10 the German finished 11th overall. Standing Construct Honda MXGP’s Brian Bogersis getting his rhythm back as he managed to get a 11-11 for a good 10th overall for the Dutch rider.

Guadagnini unfortunately had to retire following a crash while he was on his way up in 7th position. The Italian had to go to the medical centre on site to make checks. Further updates will follow in due time. 

Jeremy Seewer:” Of course I wanted to win the second race also but Romain (Febvre) was very quick, anyway it is amazing after all to win the GP in front this incredible crowd. I want to thank everybody, my team and my family because it is a lot of hard work behind the scene. We keep going and it gives me some energy again and I’m now looking forward for the next GPs.”

Romain Febvre: “I feel I deserve that place after what happened in Spain. We thought that the season could have been over and I am now here nearly winning a GP which is fantastic for the team, my family and everyone involved. Let’s keep working and try to reduce the gap with the lead

Jorge Prado: “Overall it was a good weekend, I felt very good in the first race even if I lost a couple of places and in the second race third was the best I could do, I give my 100% as the guys in front were riding very fast. We extended the lead in the Championship which very important and another podium that shows consistency which is the key. I’m super happy and thanks to my team and everyone supporting me.

MXGP – Grand Prix Race 1 – Top 10 Classification: 1. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Yamaha), 34:42.224; 2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:11.698; 3. Romain Febvre (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:16.251; 4. Jorge Prado (ESP, GASGAS), +0:17.890; 5. Ruben Fernandez (ESP, Honda), +0:38.763; 6. Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, GASGAS), +0:43.210; 7. Valentin Guillod (SUI, Honda), +0:44.762; 8. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, Yamaha), +0:47.466; 9. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, Yamaha), +0:51.200; 10. Brent Van doninck (BEL, Honda), +0:54.588.

MXGP- Grand Prix Race 2 – Top 10 Classification: 1. Romain Febvre (FRA, Kawasaki), 34:16.825; 2. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Yamaha), +0:03.497; 3. Jorge Prado (ESP, GASGAS), +0:11.894; 4. Ruben Fernandez (ESP, Honda), +0:14.569; 5. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, Yamaha), +0:17.885; 6. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, Yamaha), +0:32.387; 7. Valentin Guillod (SUI, Honda), +0:37.670; 8. Brent Van doninck (BEL, Honda), +0:39.518; 9. Benoit Paturel (FRA, Yamaha), +0:43.845; 10. Tom Koch (GER, KTM), +0:58.783.

MXGP – GP Top 10 Classification: 1. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, YAM), 47 points; 2. Romain Febvre (FRA, KAW), 45 p.; 3. Jorge Prado (ESP, GAS), 38 p.; 4. Ruben Fernandez (ESP, HON), 34 p.; 5. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, YAM), 29 p.; 6. Valentin Guillod (SUI, HON), 28 p.; 7. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, YAM), 27 p.; 8. Brent Van doninck (BEL, HON), 24 p.; 9. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 22 p.; 10. Brian Bogers (NED, HON), 20 p.

MXGP – World Championship Top 10 Classification: 1. Jorge Prado (ESP, GAS), 342 points; 2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 318 p.; 3. Romain Febvre (FRA, KAW), 263 p.; 4. Ruben Fernandez (ESP, HON), 263 p.; 5. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, YAM), 243 p.; 6. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, YAM), 226 p.; 7. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, YAM), 217 p.; 8. Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, GAS), 203 p.; 9. Maxime Renaux (FRA, YAM), 202 p.; 10. Valentin Guillod (SUI, HON), 162 p.

MXGP – Manufacturers Classification: 1. Yamaha, 352 points; 2. GASGAS, 348 p.; 3. KTM, 333 p.; 4. Honda, 283 p.; 5. Kawasaki, 279 p.; 6. Beta, 124 p.; 7. Husqvarna, 18 p.;

Text/Bild: Infront