2019 MXGP World Champ: Tim Gajser
Round 15 of the FIM Motocross World Championship concluded at the historic circuit of Imola where Team HRC’s Tim Gajser won his third Motocross World Title in his illustrious career and he is now the first one Honda rider who made it. The history in Imola was not just made it by the Slovenian rider as in MXGP Class Standing Construct KTM’s Glenn Coldenhoff won his first GP of the season and Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jorge Prado had in his pockets the victory number 14 out of 15 for 2019.
Yamaha’s Arnaud Tonus led the opening MXGP race early, followed by Gautier Paulin, KTM’s Glenn Coldenhoff, Tim Gajser and Jeremy Seewer in fifth position. Paulin moved into the lead and Gajser quickly rode into third place. Gajser did not take the easy route as he was pushing hard to get past the two Yamaha’s in front and he moved alongside Tonus, but then lost a spot as he collided with Tonus letting Paulin charge into first and Coldenhoff into second place, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Pauls Jonass was third and Gajser found himself fourth.
Gajser pushed his way past Jonass and was back into third and Coldenhoff was all over Paulin for the lead until he took a wild ride and nearly crashed. Gajser managed to take second place and Coldenhoff moved into first. Jonass passed Gajser and then the drama continued as Gajser crashed and dropped in 8th. Despite the crash, the Slovenian was still pushing 100%. After eight laps Coldenhoff held a lead of nearly eight seconds ahead of Paulin, then came Seewer, Jonass, and Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP team’s Romain Febvre in fifth place. Febvre moved past Jonass, and then the Latvian made a mistake and Tonus and Gajser also passed the Husqvarna rider. Gajser moved into sixth and started hunting down Tonus and Febvre.
Gajser nearly crashed again as he slipped a little while Febvre went down hard and Paulin, Tonus, and Gajser all passed as Febvre dropped back to 11th place. Coldenhoff eventually won the race from Seewer, Paulin and Tonus as Gajser settled for fifth, but it was enough to win his third Motocross World Championship. Coldenhoff was again in front for the second MXGP race taking the FOX Holeshot ahead of Seewer, Jonass, Searle and Gajser. Coldenhoff controlled the race up-front as he was three seconds ahead after three laps. Behind him, Seewer was a further two seconds ahead of Jonass. Gajser and Paulin rounded out the top five.
Four laps in and Coldenhoff was five seconds in front, and RFX KTM’s Shaun Simpson made his first appearance in the top ten as he moved into 10th place just behind Lupino. Gajser moved past Jonass, and the top five was Coldenhoff, Seewer, Gajser, Jonass and Paulin. After seven laps, Coldenhoff extended his lead to seven seconds, then came Seewer, Gajser, Jonass, Paulin and Febvre in sixth place. Simpson suffered some issued as he dropped to 24th and HRC’s Brian Bogers was forced out of the race after a crash. Gajser moved into second place where both him and Seewer were closing down the lead on Coldenhoff. Seewer was quickly past Gajser for second, but then Seewer made a mistake and Gajser had relegated the Yamaha rider back to third. Coldenhoff made some great laps and made his lead nearly 10 seconds on lap 12, with Gajser still second, then Seewer, Jonass and Paulin. In the closing stages of the race Paulin passed Jonass for fourth place and Coldenhoff won race 2 from Gajser and Seewer.
Glenn Coldenhoff walked away with the perfect 1-1 results and took the Grand Prix victory. It is the third time the Dutchman has won a Grand Prix, adding to his MX2 win in 2013 and his MXGP win in 2015. Second overall was Jeremy Seewer of the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP team with 2-3 scores. While Team HRC’s Tim Gajser didn’t win the MXGP of Italy today at the magnificent Imola facility, it was the big picture that counted, and his 5-2 results were enough to secure third overall and more importantly the 2019 MXGP championship.
Tim Gajser: “It was crazy. I am super happy, and I couldn’t wish for a better season or a team around me. I didn’t sleep a lot last night but today is a big day and I tried to take this race the same as all the others. I was fast in the first race even if I didn’t have the best start but I got to second and tried to win the race, but I was quite nervous and I couldn’t. Second race was better. I’m really happy to finish on the podium and to get the 2019 MXGP Title. Also, I want to thank my family and my girlfriend, and all the fans who follow me.”
Highlights Video From Imola: