Check out what the top riders thought of their weekend in the deep sand of Lommel. From winners Herlings and Prado, to all the others.

Jeffrey Herlings: “I’m really pleased with the weekend. Three good starts and fastest in each practice. This is one of my favourite tracks on the calendar so I’m happy to extend the points gap a little bit. There are five rounds left, we’re 75% ‘in’ and the end is in sight, and we’ll look forward to Switzerland. It will be a new weekend and you cannot get a more different track compared to here. I want to give a special thanks to the Red Bull KTM team; the guys did an amazing job. Also WP because the suspension was awesome and the atmosphere in the team is great so a big shout out to them and all the support I’ve had.”

Jorge Prado: “A great weekend and I was feeling very good today, even from warm-up with the bike and the track. They left it pretty rough for today and it was a bit weird in some places in the second moto but I was enjoying it. We train really hard so when we get to a track like this then you can see who is really fit and who can keep the focus: if you lose focus then it is so easy to make a mistake. I think I did well in this way and to go 1-1.”

Antonio Cairoli: “Overall I’m happy because I know in the sand and on this type of track Jeffrey is very fast. It would have been nice to be a little bit closer but I’ve had issues with my thumb and could not train exactly as I wanted in the sand lately. I know how to ride it but to keep this kind of speed the whole moto is very tough. Two-times second is OK and for the rest of the season we’ll try to stay as close to Jeffrey’s wheel as possible and make a win where we can. A lot can still happen in the races to go. I’m looking forward to Switzerland. It is a track I really like and hopefully we can have a better result.”

Thomas Covington: “I’m really happy with second overall at this tough GP. A few years ago, I couldn’t even think this would be possible over here in Lommel. There’s been a few weekends where I felt I should have won the GP, but this weekend Jorge [Prado] was just better. I could push him during the first part of the motos, but after that I decided to keep it steady and ride safely for the overall podium. I just can’t thank the whole Rockstar Energy Husqvarna team members for all their hard work. We’ve been able to get some great results during the last few GPs and it’s onwards and upwards from here.”

Thomas Kjer-Olsen: “It feels good to be back on the podium. The track was brutal during both motos and the heat made things even harder. I got a decent gate pick from Saturday’s qualifying and my starts were good in both motos. I did the best I could in both races and I’m happy with third overall for this GP. With Thomas [Covington] getting second overall, it just shows how hard all the members of the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna team work. It felt good to be on the podium with my teammate. It was great to end the weekend like that and I’m looking forward to more times like that in the future.”

Max Anstie: “It was a tough GP and I was pleased to get on the podium. Overall, we’re making steps forward and we showed that this weekend. Getting fourth in qualifying gave me a good gate pick and my starts were great in both motos. In the first moto I made some passes before settling for fourth. Then in the second moto, I got another good start but I was running a little bit low on energy so had to give it my all until the finish. We had a great battle with Glenn [Coldenhoff] for third. Soon after I passed him I crashed and had to do it all over again. I kept pushing as much as I could and managed to secure my second podium result for the season.”

Glenn Coldenhoff: “I was not near the top five in the practice sessions and it was a bit frustrating. We made some changes to the bike – actually for the first time since the beginning of the year – with the engine after we’d tested last week. I had to get used to it and that contributed to the bad start in the first moto. I couldn’t make my own speed or rhythm and was just too slow. Finally I got to sixth, which was solid but not for this race where I expected to be nearer the front…like you saw in the second moto. I was a bit slower than Max but he went down. I finally got my first holeshot of the year! It has been too long. I can be happy with the second moto but we were aiming for that podium.”

Pauls Jonass: “I actually felt pretty good all weekend and my speed and fitness was there. I felt good behind Jorge in the first race where I was waiting until the end to attack but a small mistake with the lapper in the waves meant I went a bit sideways trying not to touch. I landed in and out of the rut, crashed and lost a lot of time. I still got back to fourth. Van Doninck jumped out of the gate at the start of the second moto and I was a bit shocked. I completely lost my concentration and then after the first jump I lost the blisters on my left hand. It was tough and painful. For the first ten-fifteen minutes I was trying to find the position to hold the handlebars but in the last fifteen minutes I was again good. Sixth is not what we wanted and we’re 28 points behind Jorge now but there are five races to go and 250 points on the table. I’m looking ahead.”

Jago Geerts: “It’s really special to race at my home GP and in front the fans. I had a pretty good weekend but my starts were not that good, but still I managed to come back in both races. In the first race I could see fifth and fourth and then I had a pretty big crash but still finished seventh, and then in the second race, I could fight back to second, so it was fun.”

Clement Desalle: “It was a difficult weekend for me. It can be perfect if you have a good feeling with this track but it can also be dramatic if you don’t find this feeling. I finished twice in the top ten but I can’t be happy with that; some guys can take risks to get a top result at this period of the season as they need results, but I can’t bring myself to do that on a track like this one. At least I didn’t lose so many points against the guys who are behind me in the standings, and this race is behind us; I remain positive and can focus on the next ones.”

Ben Watson: “I was quite frustrated all weekend. I felt warm-up was good this morning, but after I came in, I struggled to eat food and I just felt weak, like jelly. I think I was putting too much pressure on myself. After the sighting lap, I didn’t feel good and I didn’t have any strength in me at all. I personally thing it was mentally. I am not that tired, I just think I went into this weekend with too much pressure on myself.”

Tim Gajser: “It was a difficult weekend and I’m glad it’s done! The good thing about it was definitely the starts, as I was up there in all the motos. The first 15-20 minutes of both motos were OK, but I made too many mistakes. After I crashed in race one it was hard to get up to speed again, and in general I felt like I was fighting against the track. Nevertheless, we scored some important points and got closer to third place in the standings, so we now look forward to be back at a hard-pack track in Switzerland. Thank you to the team for their amazing job, as usual.”

Adam Sterry: “With the speed I had this weekend the results could have been even better, but it’s been a decent weekend and we are taking it one step at a time; we’ve been advancing each weekend since I got back on the bike. In the first race I had a pretty good start in the top ten, but in the second one I hit the gate as someone next to me anticipated the start and it is difficult not to react also in such circumstances; I was nearly last and used so much energy in the first ten minutes to pass people that I had nothing left to catch Vlaanderen and Mewse in the last part of the race. It was a solid weekend – I’m happy with that – and something to build on again; I’m happy to be back near the front, where I belong.”

Marshal Weltin: “I’m very pleased with my weekend; it was a great reward after my late decision to join the F&H Racing Team midweek. In the first race I pushed too hard at the beginning of the race; Marc (De Reuver) was pretty sad as I didn’t follow the advice he gave me before the race to not to give more than 80% during the first laps and keep some energy for the final laps of the moto! When the gate dropped at the first moto I forgot everything he told me and went 100%. Second race I didn’t forget and it proved to be good advice!”

Todd Waters: “I surely didn’t make my life easy by crashing early on in both motos! In the second one, however, I was able to find a decent pace and pass Strijbos for twenty-first position before the finish line. Obviously we are not happy with the result itself, but I feel we have made a step forward so we look forward to Switzerland, where I’ll be racing for the first time.”

Jeremy Van Horebeek: “It wasn’t the best weekend for me. There is something not right personally, but I was prepared for a tough weekend. It is what it is, I have been working hard and I will continue to work hard. It will pay off soon. Two times top ten is not bad but it’s not where I want to be.”

Shaun Simpson: “Things were looking so good this weekend but I tried a different line in the first race and landed in soft spot and went over the ‘bars. Mentally, I felt ready for this race, but physically, I spent too much energy in the first race that from half way in the second moto I was completely empty. I am quite frustrated with the result of this weekend, twice outside the top-ten when I feel I should have been inside the top-seven. I thoroughly enjoyed the weekend, and if I had to do it all again tomorrow, I would.”

Calvin Vlaanderen: “I’m not too disappointed with today’s result. Yes, it could have been better, but it could have been a lot worse, too. I fought hard the whole day and did my best, and I feel I couldn’t have done a lot better than this. I put it down in the second moto, which was my fault: they kind of made the outside of the track flat while the inside was very rough, so I landed completely in the middle, my front washed and fell down. I had quite a good rhythm before that and I was happy with my speed, but afterwards it was nearly impossible to get up to speed again. Fifth and seventh is not really what we want, but we’ll keep working hard and fight. I look forward to Switzerland!”

Gautier Paulin: “It was a challenging GP for us. I wasn’t able to get the start I would have wanted to in the opening moto and then I crashed twice in the first lap. Conditions were really tricky at the track but I gave my best trying to collect as much points as possible for the championship. Getting 11th overall is not the result we were looking for, but we’ll take it for what it is and move on. We will keep working hoping to end this season on a high note.”

Bas Vaessen: “I am pretty happy with my weekend overall. Things weren’t too great on Saturday as I couldn’t find my rhythm but every time I got on the track I felt better and better. In both motos I felt pretty comfortable, especially in the second race where I had some really good lines. It was just a shame that I crashed on the start because otherwise I feel like I could have had a top 10 easily, so I’m disappointed with that but overall I’m happy with my riding.”

Petar Petrov: “Unfortunately this weekend wasn’t what I expected and it certainly wasn’t what I hoped for. I felt like I had the speed to be around the top 10 but I just couldn’t put it together in the races. I crashed first lap in the first race and I came back to 20th but I didn’t feel comfortable. In the break we made some good changes and it was much better for the second race. Unfortunately on the first lap again, another rider lost control and forced me to crash as I was making the pass. I went over the bars pretty big and then another rider hit me in the back. When I got up, I was a long way off the rest of the field so I just put my head down and ended up getting back to 23rd. It’s not what I wanted but my laptimes were good so that’s a small positive, it’s just that I really thought I could be around the top 10 this weekend and I had the speed and the fitness to do it, just no luck.”