It was another KTM domination as the orange army dominated the podium at the Grand Prix of Europe. Austria also dominated with KTM and Husqvarna showing the way in all six podiums places. In the MXGP class, Jeffrey Herlings, Antonio Cairoli and Gautier Paulin climbed on the podium, with Pauls Jonass and Jorge Prado and Thomas Kjer-Olsen occupied the MX2 podium.

Jeffrey Herlings: (1st in MXGP) “I’m super-happy. We worked hard for this and it seems like we are getting better every week. I want to thank the team and everybody around us who has been pushing so hard. To get results like this is amazing. I’ve been riding at Red Sands a lot and the guys there did a great job with the track. I hope we’ll find some kinder temperatures next weekend!”

 

Antonio Cairoli: (2nd in MXGP) “A very good race again and we managed to make it to the podium. That’s the goal: to always be top three. I knew Jeffrey would be very strong here at his home GP and that I’d struggled in Valkenswaard for the last few years. I made some mistakes and we need to work on those and figure out why I am crashing but at least we saved the result today and made the podium. I want to be strong and healthy each weekend and again we showed we have a different speed from the rest. The aim is to try and win the next one and have fun again.”

 

Pauls Jonass: (1st in MX2) “It’s nice to start defending the title with 1-1 in the two first GPs and I so happy with the results so far. Today wasn’t so easy because I was a bit sick after Argentina. I was a bit stiff and not so aggressive as usual. Anyway, we have one week now to get ready for Spain. I hope it is warmer there because here was so cold! I was happy to see a lot of Latvian flags out there!”

 

Jorge Prado: (2nd in MX2) “The first GP was not the best so I’m happy I could get on the podium here; especially last year when I messed it up. I’m really glad to take second place and to be fighting for first place both times with Pauls. In Argentina I could not really feel my strength and all my work in the winter but today I felt better than ever and was very consistent. Pauls is riding really well and the other guys are far behind so this means we are riding good. I’m happy. Now for the home GP.”

Jonass (1) and Prado (61) fought down to the checkered flag for the overall in moto 2. Photo by: Ray Archer

Gautier Paulin: (3rd in MXGP) “It’s been a good weekend of racing and I’m happy for our first podium result of the season. I had a good start in the opening moto and after a good first lap I found myself close to the leading group of riders. There were many ruts in the track and it was difficult to pass. Just before the end I had a small crash in a frozen rut but I got back quickly and finished seventh. My performance in moto two was better and I got third at the line for third overall. I’m quite happy I managed to turn things around and this is really positive for the races to come. My bike has been working awesome throughout the weekend and I feel really confident on it. We now need to keep the hard work going and hope for the best in the next GPs.”

 

Thomas Kjer-Olsen: (3rd in MX2) “It was a good weekend despite tough conditions. Weather conditions were extreme for all and the low temperatures during the whole weekend didn’t help at all. To be honest I struggled to get a good pace in the soft sand and wasn’t feeling great going into Sunday’s racing. Ending up with a pair of third place results in these conditions is super positive. I want to pick up my pace now going into Red Sand in Spain. I am confident with the progress made so far and I think we can keep improving in every moto and every GP.”

 

Max Anstie: (6th in MXGP) “I had a good feeling overall this weekend and if it wasn’t for a few small mistakes I could have gotten even higher in the overall. In the opening moto my start was ok, but I managed to come through. Making a lot of passes I crossed the line in fourth and this made me want to do even better in moto two. I had a better start in the second race but a mistake on the opening lap dropped me outside the top 10. I put my head down and managed to get inside the top six, but a small crash in the final lap meant I had to settle for ninth. We had our ups and downs this weekend but the speed was good and I’m looking forward to racing in Spain next weekend.”

 

Thomas Covington: (5th in MX2) “It’s been a positive weekend. To be honest I struggled to get a decent pace two weeks ago in Argentina so my overall performance here in The Netherlands is a good confidence booster. Following my win in Qualifying I got two solid motos and ended up getting fifth overall in the class. I am happy with the progress made during the last couple of weeks. The plan is to keep working and keep putting the same amount of effort, hoping for improved results in the races to come.”

 

Clement Desalle: (7th in MXGP) “I knew when I came here that it would be a tough weekend with such low temperatures; it was so cold that we had no fun riding our bikes. We had never tested in these conditions but we improved my feeling with the bike throughout the weekend. I’m happy that this weekend is over as I have some bad memories here. The start was really fast, it was difficult to pass and we saw that some guys crashed pretty hard. Eighth and seventh meant that I was not in the leading group this weekend but I scored some important points today and we know that it will be a long season.”

Jeffrey Herlings took sole possession of the points lead at round 2. Photo by: Ray Archer

Evgeny Bobryshev: (35th in MXGP) “I tried to regroup and get back in the fight but it took only a few meters to realize I didn’t get front lever anymore! I did my best to come back out front, but I crashed 2 times more, trying a little bit too much.”

 

Glenn Coldenhoff: (4th in MXGP) “It was a great weekend and I felt very good on both days. I had two starts and rode solid both times. I was a little tight in the first one because I wanted to follow those guys [Cairoli and Herlings] and I wasn’t smooth. I had to slow down a little bit. It was very tough because there were a few guys behind me. I pulled another good start in the secod moto and I could see Tony was going way-faster! I tried to follow Jeffrey as well but quickly understood those two were a level above everyone else. Anyway, same points as the third place guy and it is such a shame not to be on the podium here because I have never made it at Valkenswaard. I’m going home a little disappointed but knowing that I rode well and being up there was good for my confidence.”

 

Jago Geerts: (7th in MX2) “I am happy with how today went. Yesterday was a tough Qualifying Race, but I finished fourth in the first race, which is really good but I crashed and hit another rider in the second race but still came back to thirteenth and I am happy with that.”

 

Ben Watson: (8th in MX2) “This weekend was not as good as Argentina, but it’s only Round 2 of a really long series so it has been really positive. I had two top-10 scores and I am coming away fit and healthy and I am pretty happy with my riding. I am feeling quite positive but I still know I can do better, I just need to work with the team, and myself, on getting better starts and actually put myself at the front at the beginning of the race because in both races today I made it hard for myself with poor starts, but my riding was good, so I am feeling really positive.”

 

Vsevolod Brylyakov: (11th in MX2) “It was a tough weekend for me. I am quite frustrated but I also feel that there are some positive things to take away. I made it through this weekend and I am happy to be safe and to have put some points in my pocket. Two times twelfth is far from good, but it is what it is and we will move forward from here.”

MXGP overall podium. Photo by: Ray Archer

Graeme Irwin:  (22nd in MXGP) “I started off the weekend not so bad, but in the Qualifying race I had a really good start but got taken out on first lap, which put me right back. After getting going, I then had another crash but this time went over the bars and the bike hit me in back. That put me dead last but I managed to work up to 24th and that was the end of Saturday! In Race 1 I struggled; I just couldn’t find a rhythm. The conditions were pretty crazy; it was freezing – but no excuses as it was the same for everyone else. I crossed the line in 19th for two points. In Race 2 I got an average start but was soon coming up through the pack. I was making a pass for 16th and then made a mistake and washed the front out. That twisted the bike, but I got back up and finished 21st. “I’m really disappointed not to score points in the second race as I really feel I could have got a top 15. But it is what it is and need to put my head down and do better at Redsand and demonstrate what I know I’m capable of.”

 

Tim Gajser: (9th in MXGP) “Actually I am a little bit disappointed because yesterday I had good speed and the qualification race went well, so I was expecting a bit more from today. I had two good starts but made quite a few mistakes that cost me a lot of time but I’m happy that finished both races – and that I didn’t get hurt. We did some important laps, so now I’m looking forward to Spain.”

 

Calvin Vlaanderen: (13th in MX2) “The whole weekend hasn’t gone the way I wanted. I was expecting a lot more from myself, so disappointed is an understatement, actually. I know I’m a lot better than what I showed today, and I’ll keep it in my head. I didn’t have the best feeling with the bike during warm up, but we made some adjustments ahead of race one and I felt a lot better. Unfortunately I put it down – my fault – so I finished 15th. In the second race I got a better start but the guys were catching me from behind, and then a coming together cost me a few places. We need to step up our game in Spain because I didn’t have the right pace here in Holland. I also did not have the intensity needed for this type of track: the flu might have played a part, but no excuses.”

 

Adam Sterry: (10th in MX2) “In the first race my start was pretty good but I hit a rider who crashed in front of me and then on the same lap I crashed again. I was a long way behind but I recovered to sixteenth, even if I was a little tired at the end. In the second race I was around twelfth at the start and came back to eighth; for sure we want more but we are progressing each week. The weather made the track difficult and conditions were different each time we went on the track.”

 

Hunter Lawrence: (6th in MX2) “It was a so-so weekend really, from my perspective. We got sixth from the qualification race but in the first moto I didn’t get a good start after being too aggressive with the clutch. I was around 16th to begin with but I was making passes and moving through the pack. Then I had a coming-together with another rider and dropped back down again. I pushed through to get sixth in the end and although I was disappointed to have only come sixth, I was happy with my riding and that I got close to the money points. In the second moto I got a really good jump out the gate, but I just couldn’t make it stick around the first bend. I just couldn’t get into my groove though and was struggling most of the moto. I gave it everything I had but I didn’t have anything for the guys up front this weekend. Next week is another round though and I’ll be giving it my all once again.”

Hunter Lawrence was not on the pace of the leaders again at round 2. Photo by: Ray Archer

Shaun Simpson:  (15th in MXGP) “I had a slight issue with the tear-off’s breaking on my goggles because it was that cold that the plastic was freezing. That was how bad the conditions were yesterday, so I struggled with 13th gate pick but was couldn’t get comfortable in the first race and made three big mistakes. Not sure what the issue was, but I couldn’t get the bike re-started, so had to DNF. I went back to pits and we put our brains together and changed the set-up of the bike completely. I couldn’t be happier with the results. The bike felt like a completely different bike to ride. I felt so at home and felt like I wasn’t pushing. I felt smooth, and like… ‘me’. A couple of guys passed me towards the end of the final race, but I am not bothered about that. I am just ecstatic with how the bike was handling and what we came up with. A DNF and sixth isn’t great, but I’ll focus on the sixth because I genuinely believe it should have been a sixth in the first race as well. Get ride of that and let’s move on to Red Sands where I believe I will be back in the top six, and for the rest of the season.”

 

Jeremy Seewer: (8th in MXGP) “I had a good feeling on the bike, especially after my crash in Argentina. I wasn’t sure I would ride this weekend, but I came back and my speed was the same, I was on the pace. I decided to take it easy and just have fun today and make sure I didn’t crash again. I managed to finish eighth overall, which I feel is really positive especially because I have not been riding so much in the last couple of weeks. I am happy with where I am at under the circumstances and I am just trying to adapt to the MXGP class, and improve every race.”

 

Arminas Jasikonis: (12th in MXGP) “So far we’ve been struggling a little bit with setting up the bike but last week we made some good progress which is what I’ve needed after missing all winter. Even in free practice when I was second overall I felt good and I wanted to push onwards but as we made some changes to try and improve I made mistakes and crashed quite hard in the qualification race. Today I had a bit of pain all over, so I decided to back it down and overall it seemed to work out. We’re getting better and my 11th in the second moto after 13th in the first race shows that improvements are there. The team have been working hard and I’m looking forward to continuing this level next weekend in Spain.”