Monster Energy Yamaha were able to leave the Grand Prix of Sweden at the Uddevalla circuit pleased to see Steven Frossard making his first steps back to form and race fitness. The Frenchman scored an impressive pole position on Saturday and then took 8th position in the first moto across a slick and bumpy terrain for the tenth round of seventeen in the FIM Motocross World Championship.
The former MX1-GP championship runner-up returned to the premier class in emphatic style around a very technical course on Saturday. Frossard – a previous winner at Uddevalla in 2010 and 2011 – led the world to pole position around a wet and slick soil on the YZ450FM. Sunday dawned sunny and dry and the track was duly transformed into a hard-pack and rutty surface.
Frossard wasn’t able to count on the holeshot for the first 35 minute and 2 lap moto and felt his way into the race by running in the mid top ten. Some arm-pump and one or two mistakes were natural consequences of missing seven rounds of GP action. After taking 8th place he was again searching for another solid finish in the second moto but a small crash led to an elbow scrape and he withdrew from proceedings.
Joel Roelants was a non-starter on Sunday. The Belgian had to throw away his goggles during the wet qualification race on Saturday and was smacked in the right eye by a rock and the injury required medical attention and a hospital visit. The impact caused internal bruising and left ‘34’ with blurry vision and clearly in no condition to compete, although doctors expect the situation to clear up in several days.
The Grand Prix of Latvia will take place at the Kegums circuit for the fifth year in a row this coming weekend for round eleven.
Steven Frossard: “I had a good day yesterday with the holeshot and it was easy to stay in front for the pole position. Today it didn’t really work out like that. In the first moto the start was bad and I didn’t have a great feeling. Physically I was fine but I had some arm-pump and concentrated on keeping my position. It was difficult on this track and I made some mistakes. Anyway I was happy to finish and come out with some decent points. I was in second at the start of the second moto but on the first lap somebody block-passed me off the track. Later I had a small crash while I was seventh. Again I didn’t feel great out there but I’m happy with my speed and step-by-step I will be better. My confidence is there.”
Joel Roelants: “I had to take off the goggles and a rock hit me in the eye like a cannonball. We had to go to hospital and there was damage to the eye and bruising behind the pupil. My vision is really blurry so I was not cleared to race. The doctors say that the eye is a quick-healing part of the body and it already feels better than it did yesterday. They said it should be alright in five days and I hope I will be in the paddock in Latvia.”