DEEP RUTS AND TIMID STRUTS
The 14th round of the FIM Motocross World Championship was held in Lommel, Belgium. The circuit is considered to be one if the toughest tracks in the race calendar due to it’s sandy layout and ruts, frequently measuring up to 1 meter in depth.
Pauls kicked off his weekend by being just outside the Top10 during the qualifying race. The 20 minutes and 2 laps were quite hard for the Latvian, who made some costly mistakes and got thrown back in the pack, eventually winding up in 14th position.
On Sunday, after coming out of the starting lane inside the pack of the first ten riders during the first final race, the athlete lost his speed halfway through and fell back a couple of positions. Jonass described his performance frankly : ” It was tough on Sunday – conditions were a lot warmer than on Saturday and the track got a lot bumpier. The first race went by well. Even though I made a few mistakes that made me drop down from 5th to 7th place, things went well overall.”
“In the second moto I got a good start again, but then ended up stalling the bike in one of the corners. It took a while to get going again. It’s a shame because this is definitely one of my favourite GPs and I know I have the speed to do well here,” he revealed afterwards. Indeed, the second MXGP race of the day brought highs and lows as Pauls was riding very well, at one point even being in the 4th place; however, Lommel was having none of his success – after getting stuck in one of the corners of the track the Latvian had to work his way up all over again, pushing his physical and mental abilities to the limit. Jonass finished 11th, a spot not satisfactory neither for the athlete nor his team and fans.
“Looking at the positives, my lap times were good and stayed swift right till the end. I need to work a little on my physical fitness as the weight of the 450 and the added speed around here takes a lot more from one than the MX2 bike. Overall, I am happy with how I rode and am now looking forward to the next round in Italy,” Jonass ended cheerfully, despite falling to the 10th spot in the championship overall standings.
In two weeks time, the elite of motocross will gather at Imola, Italy, for the 15th round of the season of 2019.
Written by Nikola Serge
Image by Juan Pablo Acevedo