Two thrilling races hindered by small crashes saw Wilvo Yamaha Official MXGP’s Shaun Simpson narrowly miss out on a top-five result at the nineteenth round of the MXGP World Championship in Assen, The Netherlands. The 30 year-old was sixth-place in the overall classification while teammate Jeremy Seewer rounded out the top-ten after a few mistakes of his own.
Having won multiple Grand Prix’ on rough and technical tracks, the choppy and unforgiving nature of the Assen circuit worked to Shaun Simpson’s advantage. Looking extremely comfortable aboard his Wilvo Yamaha Official MXGP backed YZ450F, the Scot posted a season-best result with a complete line up of sixes. 6 – 6 for sixth overall, despite a small crash in both races.
While Simpson enjoyed the unusual conditions and showed moments of brilliance as he recovered from his spills in each race, Seewer was not a fan and limitation of errors was the name of the game for the rookie. The 23 year-old struggled to find his rhythm in the opening race and had to settle for eleventh place after two falls, but he managed to come back with a vengeance in the final race of the weekend after a better start.
The Swiss rider made some small improvements as the day went on and finished the weekend with a slightly more positive ninth-place finish after he lost a position to Gautier Paulin in the latter stages of the race, which was enough for tenth-place in the overall classification.
Despite his best efforts to race while fighting a bacterial infection, Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP’s Jeremy Van Horebeek withdrew from the opening race after 2-laps due to insufficient strength and energy to compete on such a tough and grueling sand track safely.
The MXGP Championship will take a one weekend break, where the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team hopes to return to full strength with both riders, Romain Febvre and Jeremy Van Horebeek, fit and healthy and ready to contest the twentieth and final round of the MXGP World Championship that is set to take place at the popular road-race circuit, Imola, Italy on the weekend of September 30th.
6th MXGP Overall, 15th MXGP Championship Standings
“I feel good. I am slightly disappointed that I didn’t finish inside the top-five. I wanted it, the team wanted it and Jeremy has been wanting it all year, but unfortunately we couldn’t get it done. I am a little bit disappointed on that front, but otherwise it’s been the best weekend I have had all year. I showed some good speed yesterday, and even today but I crashed in every race this weekend. I think the mistakes definitely cost me the first race where I could have finish fourth. In the second race, my speed was good but it just wasn’t enough. I needed more ‘sprint’ speed, rather than the marathon pace I was running. Stuff to work on, just a shame it’s the end of the year. I look forward to seeing what we can do in the last race of the year.”
10th MXGP Overall, 8th MXGP Championship Standings
“I am definitely not happy with how my weekend went. I had bad starts, crashes in the first race, although I did manage to come back really strong for 11th. I struggled a little bit with suspension and a little bit with myself this weekend. I didn’t make too many mistakes in the final race and I did feel better but for some reason I always struggle here. One more round to go, and I think it will be something that I like more.”