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Stat Sheet: Swiss MXGP

There is so much that goes on at each FIM Motocross World Championship round that it is inevitable that you will overlook certain things. That is where our regular ‘Stat Sheet’ feature comes into play, however, as we focus on the details that you may have overlooked.

MXGP

Holeshot (Moto One)

Max Anstie

Best Times (Moto One)

Antonio Cairoli

2:00.532

Arminas Jasikonis

2:00.612

Romain Febvre

2:00.984

Max Anstie

2:01.329

Arnaud Tonus

2:01.433

Laps Led (Moto One)

Arnaud Tonus

16

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Arminas Jasikonis, surprisingly, had a great lap in moto one.

Suzuki-Racing.com

Holeshot (Moto Two)

Antonio Cairoli

Best Times (Moto Two)

Jeffrey Herlings

1:59.469

Romain Febvre

2:00.337

Gautier Paulin

2:00.442

Antonio Cairoli

2:00.604

Tim Gajser

2:00.974

Laps Led (Moto Two)

Jeffrey Herlings

15

Gautier Paulin

1

– Jeffrey Herlings won the Grand Prix of Switzerland with a fairly unorthodox score of forty points. When was the last time that the winner of the premier division had such a lower total? Kevin Strijbos won the Grand Prix of Belgium last year with the same number of points, forty, after registering a 3-3 scorecard. The rider before that was Romain Febvre (1-6) at the Grand Prix of Italy in 2015.

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Jeffrey Herlings now has a firm grasp on second in the points.

KTM/Ray Archer

– Why were the scores so low over the weekend? The track was tough to pass on. It was possible to move forward, of course, but the elite guys were running very similar times and hitting the same lines for the most part. Jeffrey Herlings was running the same pace as Arnaud Tonus towards the end of the first MXGP encounter on Sunday, as the table below shows, but a mediocre start thwarted his efforts.

Jeffrey Herlings

Arnaud Tonus

Difference

Lap 9

2:03.954

2:02.872

+1.082

Lap 10

2:03.372

2:02.055

+1.317

Lap 11

2:05.054

2:02.365

+2.689

Lap 12

2:03.100

2:03.398

-0.298

Lap 13

2:03.316

2:02.495

+0.821

Lap 14

2:03.046

2:03.496

-0.450

Lap 15

2:03.700

2:02.857

+0.843

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Getting out of the gate well is extremely important in MXGP.

Husqvarna/J.P Acevedo

– Speaking of starts, those have really been a kryptonite for a lot of MXGP stars. Antonio Cairoli has claimed thirteen of the twenty-nine Fox holeshot awards and, amazingly, next on the list is Tim Gajser with four. Jeffrey Herlings does not have a single one though, so it is quite clear where the problem lies for ‘84’. Just how big is the issue though? Herlings has an average-starting position of seventh across twenty-nine motos.

– The first four rounds were simply terrible for Jeffrey Herlings, which was obviously well-documented, so it is fairly surprising that he almost has more moto wins than Antonio Cairoli now. ‘222’ has acquired nine moto wins across the first fifteen rounds and Herlings has eight. That is a remarkable comeback! How different would the standings look if the points were tallied up from round five on? The table below has that information.

1st

Antonio Cairoli

469

2nd

Jeffrey Herlings

449

3rd

Gautier Paulin

374

4th

Clement Desalle

364

5th

Romain Febvre

312

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Romain Febvre is still running after that elusive podium finish.

Yamaha Racing

– Romain Febvre has made significant progress in recent weeks, but has not stood on the podium at all this season. The last time that the former champion stood on the box was at the Swiss Grand Prix last year, funnily enough, which was three hundred and seventy-five days ago. That is quite a drought for a rider with such a lucrative contract. One could argue that ‘461’ was actually lucky to make the podium in Switzerland last year, as the same scorecard would have only been good enough for fourth this year.

– Although fourth overall was not quite what Romain Febvre wanted at Frauenfeld-Gachnang, there was a reason to celebrate. Febvre had his highest haul of points of the season, thanks to the fifth and third that he had in the motos, as Portugal was previously his best event. Thirty-four points were acquired on that day in July.

– There is an intriguing dynamic at Yamaha, as the Wilvo Yamaha MXGP outfit are responsible for most of the success that the Japanese manufacturer has experienced this season. The YZ450F has won two races in the premier class this year, thanks to Shaun Simpson and Arnaud Tonus, but the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing riders have not managed to reach the chequered flag first at all.

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It's been a successful year for the Wilvo Yamaha MXGP outfit.

Yamaha Racing

– When was the last time that Yamaha won two motos or less across the first fifteen rounds of the FIM Motocross World Championship? Three years ago, when Jeremy Van Horebeek was the only rider beneath the factory awning and captured just a single moto win in the Czech Republic. Yamaha actually won just a single moto in 2012 and 2013, as well as 2014, so the fifteen triumphs that they had in 2015 made for quite the turnaround.

– Arnaud Tonus enjoyed a consistent streak prior to the second moto at the Grand Prix of Switzerland; he finished inside of the top ten in thirteen motos in succession. The Swiss pilot had, unbelievably, never managed that before! The highest streak that he managed to put together in MX2 consisted of ten finishes of tenth or higher and in America he put seven of those results together.

– It is fairly unorthodox for a rider to win one moto in the premier division, but fail to finish the next. When did this last happen? One thousand two hundred days ago. Gautier Paulin claimed the first moto victory at Valkenswaard in 2014, but then sustained multiple injuries when he was struck by another rider in the second encounter. That is remarkably similar to what Tonus experienced at his home Grand Prix.

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Arnaud Tonus will certainly miss the Grand Prix of Sweden.

Yamaha Racing

– The battle that Arnaud Tonus and Max Anstie had in the first MXGP encounter was simply exhilarating. The pair were remarkably close too, as the difference between them never exceeded three seconds. It was a real game of cat and mouse but, rather than explain that with words, we’ll just let the figures do the talking.

Arnaud Tonus

Max Anstie

Difference

Lap 8

2:02.847

2:02.355

+0.492

Lap 9

2:02.872

2:02.441

+0.431

Lap 10

2:02.055

2:02.423

-0.368

Lap 11

2:02.365

2:02.680

-0.315

Lap 12

2:03.398

2:03.533

-0.135

Lap 13

2:02.495

2:03.347

-0.852

Lap 14

2:03.496

2:02.709

+0.787

Lap 15

2:02.857

2:02.681

+0.176

Lap 16

2:01.894

2:01.452

+0.442

– Speaking of Max Anstie, what happened to him in the second moto? ‘99’ got caught up in the second turn, because Clement Desalle bobbled, and charged right up from the back. The lap chart states that he made nine moves across the moto, but it does not include the influx of passes that he made before he crossed the finish line for the first time. That is a fact that is often overlooked. Kevin Strjibos actually started behind Anstie and made even more progress; he advanced from twenty-fourth to thirteenth at the chequered flag.

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Max Anstie is on the verge of achieving great things in MXGP.

Husqvarna/J.P Acevedo

– Arnaud Tonus (first), Max Anstie (second) and Martin Michek (seventeenth) were the only riders in the premier division to secure a season-best finish. Tonus will not have a chance to match that in the coming weeks, because of the injury that he sustained, as he is not expected to return until the Monster Energy MXGP of the USA at the earliest.

MX2

Holeshot (Moto One)

Jorge Prado

Best Times (Moto One)

Jeremy Seewer

2:01.886

Benoit Paturel

2:02.000

Jorge Prado

2:03.578

Thomas Covington

2:04.092

Thomas Kjer Olsen

2:04.332

Laps Led (Moto One)

Jeremy Seewer

9

Jorge Prado

7

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It was a tale of two motos for Jeremy Seewer in Switzerland.

Suzuki Racing

Holeshot (Moto Two)

Jorge Prado

Best Times (Moto Two)

Benoit Paturel

2:02.254

Jeremy Seewer

2:03.187

Thomas Covington

2:03:216

Pauls Jonass

2:03.306

Hunter Lawrence

2:03.329

Laps Led (Moto Two)

Benoit Paturel

9

Thomas Covington

5

Jorge Prado

1

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Seewer couldn't capitalise on a golden opportunity on Sunday.

Suzuki Racing

– A majority of fans wanted Jeremy Seewer to claim the overall at the Grand Prix of Switzerland, but a first-turn crash in the second moto made that difficult to achieve. The speed that he possessed around Frauenfeld-Gachnang was still extremely impressive, however, even when he was stuck in traffic in that second encounter. The table below shows how his lap times compared to the leaders at the beginning of that race, despite the fact that he had to weave around slower riders.

Jeremy Seewer

Benoit Paturel

Thomas Covington

Lap 3

2:03.624

2:04.096

2:03.511

Lap 4

2:05.332

2:02.254

2:03.216

Lap 5

2:03.270

2:03.251

2:03.907

Lap 6

2:03.214

2:04.736

2:04.881

Lap 7

2:04.752

2:04.195

2:04.202

Lap 8

2:03.732

2:03.158

2:04.275

Lap 9

2:03.502

2:03.803

2:05.846

– Jeremy Seewer made a ton of passes in that second moto on Sunday, fifteen to be exact, and moved from third to first in the opening race also. ‘91’ did not make the most passes across the weekend though; Hunter Lawrence made twenty-three moves across both motos and consequently garnered bonus points on Fox MX Manager. If you include the passes that he made at the Grand Prix of Belgium, Lawrence has made forty-seven moves across two rounds.

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Hunter Lawrence has shown flashes of brilliance all season.

Suzuki Racing

– Before getting too far ahead, it seems like a good idea to look at what went on at the end of the first moto. The record books state that Jeremy Seewer was triumphant on home soil, and rightfully so, but it was much closer than he would have liked. Seewer actually had the race under control with around five laps to go, but caved under the pressure and made some large mistakes that really could have been costly.

Jeremy Seewer

Benoit Paturel

Difference

Lap 10

2:03.425

2:02.476

+0.949

Lap 11

2:04.456

2:05.307

-0.851

Lap 12

2:03.826

2:03.485

+0.341

Lap 13

2:04.064

2:04.615

-0.551

Lap 14

2:05.904

2:06.718

-0.814

Lap 15

2:04.725

2:03.432

+1.293

Lap 16

2:05.276

2:04.433

+0.843

– The final three laps undoubtedly cost Jeremy Seewer, but it is easy to see where the time was lost. Sector one, which ran through the first couple of corners, was particularly tough on the Suzuki World MX2 pilot, as the table below displays.

Jeremy Seewer

Benoit Paturel

Difference

Lap 14

28.002

27.475

+0.527

Lap 15

27.470

27.602

-0.132

Lap 16

28.033

27.617

+0.416

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Good starts were a huge help for Benoit Paturel on Sunday.

Yamaha Racing

– Benoit Paturel obviously achieved brilliant results at the Grand Prix of Switzerland, but he still had to work forward to get to that point. The fact that he managed to start third in the second moto was a major improvement, however, as the last time that he ended lap one inside of the top three was at the muddy Grand Prix of Russia. The Frenchman has now made two hundred and nine passes across the thirty motos that have been run this season.

– There is no denying the fact that this has been the greatest season that Thomas Covington has experienced. ‘64’ has been capable of podium finishes on all surfaces, no matter the weather, and made leaps forward that will undoubtedly make him a title contender next year. Just how much better is he though? Well, his average haul of points when he last contested the first fifteen rounds was six. This year, however, it is thirteen, so it has more than doubled! Bear in mind that the American has not scored points in four motos this year – that obviously dragged his average down.

Words: Lewis Phillips | Lead Image: KTM Images/Ray Archer

MX Vice Editor || 25