On the opening day of the annual EICMA Motorcycle Exhibition in Milan, Italy, Team HRC confirmed its rider line-up for the 2019 FIM Motocross World Championship, MXGP.
Brian Bogers was present at the traditional Honda factory motorsport announcement, joining the likes of World Champions Marc Marquez and Toni Bou, although both Tim Gajser and Calvin Vlaanderen were forced to miss the annual presentation – Gajser because of a final scheduled surgery to his jaw after the injury he suffered at the start of this season, and Vlaanderen because his strict training routine has taken him back to his native South Africa for the off-season.
Team HRC’s 2019 line-up is unchanged, with 2015 MX2 and 2016 MXGP World Champion Tim Gajser remaining on the #243 CRF450RW alongside Bogers on the #5 machine in the larger-capacity class, and 2018 Grand Prix winner Calvin Vlaanderen on the #10 CRF250RW, remaining in the smaller-capacity class for another season.
Team HRC are testing throughout the off-season in preparation for the opening round of the 2019 MXGP series at the beginning of March.
Marcus Pereira de Freitas
HRC General Manager – MXGP
“Retaining the same line-up for 2019 means we maintain consistency and can build upon the progress made in 2018, when Brian and Calvin joined us. Calvin had a strong first season with Team HRC taking his maiden Grand Prix victory and although Brian’s season was struck by injury, he’s fully recovered now and is preparing for 2019 fully fit. Tim’s injury before the GP season got underway hampered his title challenge this year, but with the final surgery he’s undergoing now we’ll have a team at full strength for next season, and our preparations are already well underway to fight at the front in both MXGP and MX2.”
Tim Gajser 243
“Everyone knows I have a long and great relationship with HRC – the team feels just like family so I’m very happy to be returning in 2019. We had a few knocks this season including my injury during the pre-season, and the final surgery is why unfortunately I’m having to miss being at EICMA this year, but it means we’ll be going into 2019 stronger than ever. When you look at all the HRC riders together at EICMA it’s an impressive show of strength so I’m sad to miss it this year, but wish all my fellow riders all the best for more success in 2019!”
Brian Bogers 5
“I’m excited for my second year with Team HRC, which to be honest is like my first again because I lost eight months in 2018 with my pre-season ankle injury. Now I’m back to 100% again after that time off the bike, so my 2019 pre-season has started well, I’m feeling very comfortable and I’m looking forward to really showing what we can do next year. Right now I’m so happy to be back on the bike again and I’m confident that we’ll be well-prepared for 2019.”
Calvin Vlaanderen 10
“I’m really excited to be working with HRC again in 2019, racing my CRF250RW in the MX2 World Championship. We had a successful 2018 with finishing 6th overall in MX2 with five podiums and a Grand Prix win. We will take that experience and build on that for the upcoming season. In 2019 I will do my best to be fighting for podiums each weekend but my main goal will be the world title.”