This weekend the FIM Motocross World Championship travels to Sweden to celebrate the tenth Grand Prix of the season on the beautiful and natural track of Uddevalla. Antonio Cairoli and Jeffrey Herlings will race the Swedish Grand Prix as the leaders of the MX1 and MX2 series, but the red plate holder of the EMX250 European Championship Valentin Guillod will also be present in Uddevalla because this weekend the Swedish track will also host the third round of the series.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antonio Cairoli is travelling to Sweden after having missed the overall victory on his home turf but he is still leading the MX1 standings with 51 points advantage over Gautier Paulin. The Italian does not really have very good memories from Uddevalla, as it was in the Swedish track where Cairoli got two DNF’s last year and lost the red plate from the likes of Desalle. However, the red plate holder is determined to leave the past aside and go back home with another Grand Prix victory.
Kawasaki Racing Team’s Gautier Paulin finished seventh last year in Uddevalla, but he will be one of the clear favourites to fight for the overall victory this weekend especially after having beaten Cairoli in Italy two weeks ago. Gautier Paulin is the youngest in the MX1 class, but he has been the most consistent rider together with Cairoli and he keeps on making significant improvements every weekend.
Rockstar Energy Suzuki World’s Clement Desalle left Maggiora with a bittersweet feeling, as he won the first race of the Italian Grand Prix, but he got a DNF in the second heat due to a mechanic problem. The Belgian rider has had some time to have the good feelings back and this weekend he is determined to give it all to repeat his 2012 overall victory in the Swedish track.
Fifteen points behind the Belgian there is his compatriot Ken De Dycker, who was back on the podium in Maggiora and obtained some valuable points to get closer to the top three riders of the MX1 class. After the Italian round, the Red Bull KTM Racing rider had some days off before he started training really hard again to be back on the podium this weekend in Uddevalla.
Rockstar Energy Suzuki World’s Kevin Strijbos finished on the third step of the podium last year in Uddevalla, so he might be riding for the top five positions again this weekend or even for a podium finish. The Belgian rider is currently fifth in the MX1 point standings but Tommy Searle is just five points behind him.
Looking at Tommy Searle’s progress in his rookie season in the MX1 class, there is a significant improvement in this second half of the season and his maiden MX1 podium finish seems to be closer than ever. Another rider that is looking forward to finishing on the podium this year is Max Nagl; the German had some difficulties in the beginning of the season, but in the last
Grand Prix he has proved that he has the speed to be riding among the top five riders of the MX1 class.
Jeremy Van Horebeek started the second half of the season riding with the top five riders of the MX1 class, so he is another contender for a podium finish either this weekend or in the Grand Prix to come. Currently, the Belgian rider is eighth in the point standings and Rui Gonçalves and David Philippaerts are completing the top ten.
Steven Frossard will be back riding his Monster Energy Yamaha machine this weekend, as his knee injury was not as serious as it was thought in the beginning. The French rider has only taken part in the first two Grand Prix of the season, so he is looking forward to racing again even if he knows that his adaptation period will not be easy.
2012 MX1 Podium
1. Clement Desalle
2. Christophe Pourcel
3. Kevin Strijbos
2012 MX1 POLEMAN: Antonio Cairoli
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jeffrey Herlings has won all the Grand Prix so far this season, but if he wins this weekend in Uddevalla, it will be the first time for the Dutch rider to win in the Swedish track. The red plate holder keeps on being fully confident with himself, but in Maggiora he was surprised by Alexander Tonkov who was able to led some laps of the Italian Grand Prix.
The second place of the Championship is still for Jordi Tixier but he has not been on the podium since the Grand Prix of Brazil. The Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider has not been really consistent in the last Grand Prix, but he is still 38 points ahead of Jose Butrón who is holding the third position in the MX2 standings.
KTM Silver Action’s José Butrón was second overall in Maggiora and he has cemented his third position in the Championship, as he is now 24 points ahead of Christophe Charlier. The Spanish rider did not have a good weekend last year in Uddevalla and he finished down in the tenth position, but he is determined to ride for another podium finish this weekend and get closer to the current runner-up of the series Jordi Tixier.
Monster Energy Yamaha’s Christophe Charlier obtained his first podium of the season in France and his sixth overall position in Italy made him move up to the fourth position of the Championship. Charlier’s main goal for this second half of the season is trying to be more consistent in order to enter the top three by the end of the year.
Standing Construct KTM’s Glenn Coldenhoff did not have a really good weekend in Italy and he dropped down one position in the point standings. The Dutch rider is just one point away from Charlier, so he will give his best in Sweden to claim back the fourth position of the championship.
Dean Ferris keeps on holding the sixth position of the MX2 standings but in the last Grand Prix he has proved that he can easily be riding among the top five or even top three riders of the MX2 class. The Australian rider had to miss some races in the beginning of the season due to several injuries, so he really needs to be fully focused in this second half of the championship if he wants to climb up some positions in the championship standings.
Jake Nicholls obtained his maiden podium in Valkenswaard, but since then he has been lacking some consistency and he is seventh in the championship. The British rider has finished among the top three in several occasions after the Dutch Grand Prix, but for one reason or another he has always had problems in the second races. This weekend Nicholls will give it all to obtain to consistent results and finish on the podium once again.
Max Anstie is currently eighth in the MX2 championship, but Alessandro Lupino is just three points behind the British rider. Dylan Ferrandis, who obtained his maiden MX2 podium last year in Uddevalla, is rounding the top ten.
Alexander Tonkov is down in the thirteenth position, but he will be a rider to follow this weekend, as he will give it all to finish on the podium and race again for the top three positions as he did in Italy.
2012 MX2 Podium
1. Tommy Searle
2. Jeffrey Herlings
3. Dylan Ferrandis
2012 MX2 POLEMAN: Jeffrey Herlings
Saturday: MX2 Free Practice 9:30; MX1 Free Practice 10:15; EMX250 Group 1 Free + Qualifying Time Practice 11:00; EMX250 Group 2 Free + Qualifying Time Practice 11:40; MX2 Pre-Qualifying Practice 13:15; MX1 Pre-Qualifying Practice 14:00; EMX250 Semi Final Group 1 14:50; EMX250 Semi Final Group 2 15:30; MX2 Qualifying Race 16:10; MX1 Qualifying Race 17:00, EMX250 Last Chance Qualifying Practice 17:40.
Sunday: EMX250 Warm up 8:30; MX2 Warm up 9:00; MX1 Warm up 9:30; EMX250 FINAL 11:10; MX2 Grand Prix Race 1 12:10; MX1 Grand Prix Race 1 13:10; MX2 Grand Prix Race 2 15:01; MX1 Grand Prix race 2 16:07.