The last chapter of the 2019 FIM Motocross World Championship was terminated in a quite exotic location never seen on the MXGP calendar before. Hong Kong hosted the 20th round with wide smiles and open arms, hoping for everyone to end his season the same way.
It is visible even to the unobservant of us that Pauls has finally found his groove. After a great start during the qualifying race, he came though 4th in a race which turned out to be quite the battle between the guys upfront. Asked about his performance later that day, the Latvian brushed off his performance as being “alright” and said that he’s looking forward to finish the season on a great note, hopefully even a podium finish at the last round.
The track in Hong Kong had other plans on mind. Luckily, Pauls was fortunate enough to avoid any mistakes and, most importantly, huge crashes unlike some of his rivals. After a decent start Pauls was amongst the riders upfront, and skilfully maintained 5th position until the end of the moto, keeping his teammate Arminas Jasikonis behind within a safe distance.
The following and last race of the championship this year was not as cheerful as many of us wanted it to be. Even though Pauls rode well and finished 7th, there was a feeling of something being left undone. The 5 points that kept the Latvian from rising to the 5th spot in the overall classification also didn’t help with the mood.
Nonetheless, a major amount of work has been done this year. “I have some mixed feelings after this MXGP of China. With some podium results in recent races, I really wanted the same result here to end the year on a high note. But I didn’t feel as sharp as I have been feeling in the previous rounds. I’m not sure if it’s the jetlag, but anyway it certainly wasn’t a bad way to end the series,” said Jonass. “I got pretty good starts in both races ,but dropped back a little afterwards. Sixth overall is a pretty decent result. Also, to finish sixth in the MXGP championship is very positive. It was a steady start to the year, coming back from injury and also adjusting to the MXGP bike. The second half of the year was very positive – I started to improve my strength, feeling with the bike, starts and results. Now we’ll focus on the Nations before some time at home and preparation for next season.”
Indeed, the last piece of the puzzle will be put in place at the end of September when the best of the best will be gathering for a Motocross of Nations showdown in Assen, the Netherlands.
Written by Nikola Serge
Image by Juan Pablo Acevedo