It was a great day out for Red Bull KTM’s Jeffrey Herlings on Sunday at the MXGP of France at Villars sous Ecot when he had a decisive 1-1 result in his two motos to pick up his forty seventh career victory in the MX2 class.
Herlings, a Red Bull sponsored athlete sent an early signal to his rivals in both races when he shot right across the field to take the holeshot, completely negating the fact that he had landed a poor gate pick after finishing at the back of the field in Saturday’s qualifying. He had crashed in the first half of the qualifying race and then was unable to finish the final lap after having a technical issue.
The Dutch rider, who lost half his season last year through injury cross rutted and crashed while in the lead 17 minutes into his first race but turned up the heat and chased down Valentin Guillod and Jordi Tixier, taking back the lead with three laps to go. He went on to take the race by 1.3 seconds. He went out hard in his second moto, hit the front and although pursued hard by Tim Gajser and Tixier, delivered another fine victory. Gajser was second overall and Tixier took third, while Herlings’ teammate Pauls Jonass of Latvia who was unwell on Saturday bounced back on race day with a 7-4 result, enough for overall fourth place.
Herlings leaves France with a decisive 112-point lead after eight of 17 rounds. Guillod is second with 246 and Jonass is third just one point behind. He and Pauls ride the KTM 250 SX-F Factory bike
Jeffrey Herlings: “I’m definitely satisfied, especially after I ran such a tough Saturday. But we sometimes say a bad Saturday makes a good Sunday and that’s what we did. We took two good starts and that was really key at this track and we made the best of it. I made it a little bit tougher than it had to be in the first moto. I fell down and gave the competition some hope again. But I fought my way past those guys and up to the front again and I won that moto. The second one was the same with a good start. The track here is not the best for me but you just have to make the best of it. That’s what I did and obviously the starts helped a lot. So it was 1-1 for the overall, some good points for the championship and now we are off to Italy.”