Former EMX250 winner Lars Van Berkel will replace his teammate, Michael Ivanov, for this weekend’s Argentine Grand Prix. The Dutch Vamo-Honda rider was due to make his 2017 FIM Motocross World Championship debut at Arco di Trento next month. But, with Ivanov in need of more rest to let his injured thumb heal, Van Berkel received the call.
For Ivanov the much-anticipated Neuquen race comes just a little early after he picked up a thumb iunjury at the opening round in Qatar. With the back-to-back schedule from Qatar to Indonesia it was impossible to organize the fill-in ride for Van Berkel for the second round of the series. Now Lars gets the opportunity to make an earlier than anticipated GP appearance.With successful pre-season races in Spain and Holland under his belt, the twenty-three-year-old from Veghel is ready to sample one of the finest tracks on the MXGP calendar. Van Berkel scored one victory and three rostrum scores in the five races he participated in so far.
Last weekend Lars maintained his momentum running a terrific pace in Mill for the second round of the ONK MX2 series. Van Berkel was leading both races when he was stuck by technical gremlins. Understandably disappointed by the electronic issues that marred their results, the team was nevertheless upbeat about the progress made with the suspension set-up of the Vamo Honda CRF250R.
Lars Van Berkel: “I’m very excited to receive this opportunity! My fitness is good and riding has been going well lately so it will be awesome to see where I stand against the competition in the MX2 class. I have never been to Argentina but from what I understand the top of the soil is quite soft and the layout looks just fantastic. Patagonia here I come!"