Motocross

Ruben Fernandez and Jago Geerts Kick Off The 2023 MXGP Season With A Win

Posted:

Holeshot King Jorge Prado (61) leads the class of 2023 through turn one as another MXGP season gets underway. Photo: Juan Pablo Acevedo

With a stunning second moto victory, Ruben Fernandez took the overall win at the MXGP of Patagonia-Argentina, sparking scenes of delight as he crossed the line in what was his debut ride for Team HRC While In MX2 Jago Geerts dominated the weekend.

In MXGP, the Latin and Spanish worlds were gifted with some exciting racing with Ruben Fernandez and Jorge Prado who together led every lap of the two races and only saw the consistency of returning Jeffrey Herlings to interfere in the overall podium. The final podium spot was completed by Herlings in second and Jorge Prado in third who is the first red plate holder of the 2023 season. Prado’s championship lead is courtesy of his 10 points gained for winning the qualifying race on Saturday.

Meanwhile, in MX2 Jago Geerts dominated by not only topping races 1 and 2 but also the Qualifying Race to add a complete hat-trick to his season’s opening. Geerts was joined by Andrea Adamo and Thibault Benistant, second and third respectively.

MX1

In the opening MXGP race, it was Jorge Prado who grabbed the Holeshot starting the season as he finished the last but it was Ruben Fernandez who rapidly took the lead and kept it over 5 laps until Prado managed to make a move to take back the lead.

Romain Febvre made a good start to find himself fourth and quickly overtook Pauls Jonass who saw his fourth position being threatened by Maxime Renaux on lap 5. Renaux saw his hard work and the third place going to waste when he lost control of his back end and went down to only get back racing on 7th position. He did make a heroic charge to come back to third on lap 16 overtaking along the way his teammate Glenn Coldenhoff, Jonass as well as Fernandez, and Herlings. The Frenchman would keep his third place until the end.

Photo of MXGP motocross rider Ruben Fernandez at the 2023 MXGP of Patagonia-Argentina
Ruben Fernandez took the win in MXGP with a 5-1 day in his first ride for the Factory Honda Team.

Febvre went on to make it second on lap 13 due to Fernandez falling down and keeping his ground until the end. Fernandez had to settle for fifth after a scare on lap 14.

Herlings rode a consistent race and grew in confidence to safely move to fourth having started in seventh place.

Talking about consistency, Brent Van Doninck started eight and kept his position all way through and not being overtaken by Alberto Forato who had a similar race behind him in ninth.

Photo of MXGP motocross rider Jeffery Herlings at the 2023 MXGP of Patagonia-Argentina
Jeffery Herlings scored second position in his first Grand Prix race since 2021. Photo: Juan Pablo Acevedo

Race two saw Coldenhoff take the Holeshot although the Dutchman quickly dropped down to seventh. They followed the start of a dominant display from Fernandez who took the lead in the first lap to never give it up. While it was his first race win of his career on top of being checked out by Herlings in second position for the large majority of the race, the young Spaniard never lost his cool and had a comfortable 8 seconds lead for the second part of the race.

The comeback of Herlings was one that everyone was waiting for, and “the bullet” did not disappoint. We saw Herlings growing in confidence throughout the weekend and particularly in this Race 2 where he came off the gate drop on very fast to find himself third on the first lap and quickly made the move on Jonass, who displayed a strong weekend too, to get to second. He never put Fernandez in too much pressure but Herlings was exactly where he wanted to be as he showed calm, experienced, and fast racing.

Photo of MXGP motocross rider Jorge Prado at the 2023 MXGP of Patagonia-Argentina
Jorge Prado leads the MXGP series standings entering round two after qualifying points helped him to a two-point advantage at the end of the weekend. Photo: Juan Pablo Acevedo

Finishing in third, Seewer made one of the most heroic races after an average start for his standards leaving him tenth after the first lap. But the Swiss was quick to show his qualities as he made an assault on Brian Bogers and his teammate Coldenhoff on lap 5 on a big jump to move to seventh. Seewer was then on a mission as he clocked the best lap and overtook Guadagnini, Prado, and Jonass in the space of 3 laps. He kept this advantage until the end.

Displaying a strong performance during this weekend, Jonass regularly in the top ten, ended race 2 in a promising fourth place.

Finishing fifth was Febvre who was able to maintain his racing level after the first race and showed some classy moves such as the overtake on Prado on lap 17. While Prado was maybe not as incisive as he was in race 1, he settled for sixth place and this gave him a place on the overall podium.

Photo of MXGP motocross rider Mitch Evans at the 2023 MXGP of Patagonia-Argentina
Mitch Evans and KRT management decided after morning warm-up that it was better for the Australian to sit out racing rather than risk delaying further his complete recovery from an early-season thumb injury.

In the end, with his win in race 2 Fernandez won the MXGP of Patagonia-Argentina and his first GP of his career in front of Jeffrey Herlings and Jorge Prado. The next round in Sardinia will see however Prado with the red plate as he won 10 points in the RAM Qualifying Race ending at the end of this weekend with 50 points. Fernandez fresh GP winner is second in the Championship with 48 points and Romain Febvre third with 44 points.

“It is unbelievable to have won this race and overall,” Fernandez said. “When they told me I had won the GP, it was crazy, especially after the crash in race one when I was in second. It has been a long journey to get here, and I couldn’t be happier with how things have gone. It has been great working with all of Team HRC and it feels like a family already and to get all their support throughout means a lot to me. Winning the GP is a special feeling and I am really just so happy.”

Jorge Prado was happy to walk away with the championship lead, despite not winning the round overall.

 “I think that I need to be happy, after winning the qualification heat yesterday and the first moto today. The second moto was not perfect, but I am very happy about my riding. I am happy! I am really happy that the next race is in sand because I feel great on my MC 450F in those conditions too. Hopefully, we can extend our gap in the championship.”

MX2

Photo of MXGP motocross rider Jago Geerts at the 2023 MXGP of Patagonia-Argentina
Jago Geerts had the perfect weekend in MX2 taking both moto wins and qualifying fastest.

In MX2 Race One, the Holeshot went to Lucas Coenen before he crashed and had to stop racing. Jago Geerts had an ideal start as he quickly moved into the lead in front of his teammate Thibault Benistant. The two riders would go on to fight for the top spot throughout the whole race with the Frenchman eventually getting his way passed Geerts on lap 3. Eventually, Benistant would go down with Kay De Wolf not able to avoid him and going down too, which gave Geerts the lead that would not give up until the finish jump.

Kay de Wolf was also in the mix behind the two and put pressure on Benistant, then Geerts. It all went to halt for the Dutchman when he caught his front wheel in the ground on as turn on lap 9 and went down to find himself in sixth position.

Andrea Adamo displayed some strong racing during race one, going from fifth to fourth during an intense give-and-take with De Wolf between laps 9 and 11. The Italian rider kept on attacking and made a move on De Wolf’s Teammate, Roan Van De Moosdijk for the third spot.

Van de Moosdijk never went out of the top four during the race and oscillated between third and fourth to settle in the end in fourth. Liam Everts showed great promise as he never got overtaken during the whole race. His confident racing showed as he climbed up the table passing Rick Elzinga and De Wolf.

Photo of MXGP motocross rider Adam Adamo at the 2023 MXGP of Patagonia-Argentina
Andrea Adamo made the top three in his first MX2 GP for the KTM team.

Simon Laegenfelder was in a ride with ups and downs being caught in a crash at the start and having to start his assault from the twenty-first place on lap one. The German showed that we can count on him to bounce back as he made an impressive comeback to eight in the end.

In race two, Kevin Horgmo took the Holeshot after an excellent start although it was Geerts who quickly took the lead. Geerts, full of confidence quickly increased the gap to 7 seconds while Horgmo showed his speed by setting the fastest lap. The two riders would keep their advantage over the rest to finish first and second.

Adamo and De Wolf saw their path crossed. The good start from the dutchman in fourth position after two laps ended with a crash that left him hanging in seventeenth place on lap 6 while Adamo, who had a decent start and turned lap 1 in eight would see himself climbing the table with some classy moves such as the one charging on the inside of Laengenfelder on lap 6.

This ended a thrilling three-way battle for fifth place between Adamo, Haarup, and Laengenfelder.

MX2 Rookie Rick Elzinga also showed some great racing that saw him start strongly to keep his place in the top four. A great battle with Adamo saw him lose his advantage finishing fourth.

Haarup on his side made a good showing by climbing his way up from eleventh place to sixth place.

Adamo eventually finished Race 2 in third giving a second position on the GP standings. Rounding up the Top 3 is Thibault Benistant who finished race 2 in 8th which would anyway give him 45 points for the third step of the GP podium.

With three good starts and three wins this weekend, I couldn’t be happier with this first Grand Prix. I will get some more training in the next two weeks to come back ready in Sardinia,” Geert said.

There’s a very small break in the Grand Prix calendar now, to allow the riders and teams to travel back from South America. The second round, the Grand Prix of Sardegna, will be run on March 25/26.

Photo of MXGP motocross rider Thibault Benistant at the 2023 MXGP of Patagonia-Argentina
Thibault Benistant rounded out the MX2 podium with third.

MXGP – Grand Prix Race 1 – Top 10 Classification:
1 Jorge Prado (ESP, GASGAS), 34:24.711
2 Romain Febvre (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:04.320
3 Maxime Renaux (FRA, Yamaha), +0:06.803
4 Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:08.753
5 Ruben Fernandez (ESP, Honda), +0:10.511
6 Pauls Jonass (LAT, Honda), +0:15.396
7 Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, Yamaha), +0:17.925
8 Brent Van doninck (BEL, Honda), +0:32.878
9 Alberto Forato (ITA, KTM), +0:34.810
10 Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, GASGAS), +0:37.044

MXGP – Grand Prix Race 2 – Top 10 Classification:
1 Ruben Fernandez (ESP, Honda), 34:43.013
2 Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:07.320
3 Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Yamaha), +0:09.699
4 Pauls Jonass (LAT, Honda), +0:22.775
5 Romain Febvre (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:28.978
6 Jorge Prado (ESP, GASGAS), +0:30.167
7 Brian Bogers (NED, Honda), +0:31.994
8 Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, GASGAS), +0:33.420
9 Maxime Renaux (FRA, Yamaha), +0:43.957
10 Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, Yamaha), +0:45.954

MXGP – GP Top 10 Classification:
1 Ruben Fernandez (ESP, HON), 41 Points
2 Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 40 Points
3 Jorge Prado (ESP, GAS), 40 Points
4 Romain Febvre (FRA, KAW), 38 Points
5 Pauls Jonass (LAT, HON), 33 Points
6 Maxime Renaux (FRA, YAM), 32 Points
7 Jeremy Seewer (SUI, YAM), 24 Points
8 Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, GAS), 24 Points
9 Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, YAM), 21 Points
10 Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, YAM), 21 Points

MXGP – World Championship Top 10 Classification:
1 Jorge Prado (ESP, GAS), 50 Points
2 Ruben Fernandez (ESP, HON), 48 Points
3 Romain Febvre (FRA, KAW), 44 Points
4 Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), 41 Points
5 Maxime Renaux (FRA, YAM), 40 Points
6 Pauls Jonass (LAT, HON), 36 Points
7 Mattia Guadagnini (ITA, GAS), 33 Points
8 Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, YAM), 26 Points
9 Glenn Coldenhoff (NED, YAM), 25 Points
10 Jeremy Seewer (SUI, YAM), 24 Points

MX2 – Grand Prix Race 1 – Top 10 Classification:
1 Jago Geerts (BEL, Yamaha), 34:08.704
2 Thibault Benistant (FRA, Yamaha), +0:14.777
3 Andrea Adamo (ITA, KTM), +0:22.703
4 Roan Van De Moosdijk (NED, Husqvarna), +0:26.447
5 Liam Everts (BEL, KTM), +0:31.789
6 Kay de Wolf (NED, Husqvarna), +0:39.432
7 Rick Elzinga (NED, Yamaha), +0:42.165
8 Simon Laengenfelder (GER, GASGAS), +0:45.014
9 Kevin Horgmo (NOR, Kawasaki), +0:50.463
10 Jan Pancar (SLO, KTM), +1:16.353

MX2 – Grand Prix Race 2 – Top 10 Classification:
1 Jago Geerts (BEL, Yamaha), 34:43.337
2 Kevin Horgmo (NOR, Kawasaki), +0:08.272
3 Andrea Adamo (ITA, KTM), +0:16.008
4 Rick Elzinga (NED, Yamaha), +0:18.203
5 Simon Laengenfelder (GER, GASGAS), +0:22.837
6 Mikkel Haarup (DEN, Kawasaki), +0:25.733
7 Roan Van De Moosdijk (NED, Husqvarna), +0:42.854
8 Thibault Benistant (FRA, Yamaha), +0:49.247
9 Lucas Coenen (BEL, Husqvarna), +0:50.013
10 Kay de Wolf (NED, Husqvarna), +0:53.526

MX2 – GP Top 10 Classification:
1 Jago Geerts (BEL, YAM), 50 Points
2 Andrea Adamo (ITA, KTM), 40 Points
3 Thibault Benistant (FRA, YAM), 35 Points
4 Kevin Horgmo (NOR, KAW), 34 Points
5 Rick Elzinga (NED, YAM), 32 Points
6 Roan Van De Moosdijk (NED, HUS), 32 Points
7 Simon Laengenfelder (GER, GAS), 29 Points
8 Kay de Wolf (NED, HUS), 26 Points
9 Liam Everts (BEL, KTM), 24 Points
10 Jan Pancar (SLO, KTM), 20 Points

MX2 – World Championship Top 10 Classification:
1 Jago Geerts (BEL, YAM), 60 Points
2 Andrea Adamo (ITA, KTM), 49 Points
3 Thibault Benistant (FRA, YAM), 41 Points
4 Simon Laengenfelder (GER, GAS), 37 Points
5 Kevin Horgmo (NOR, KAW), 36 Points
6 Roan Van De Moosdijk (NED, HUS), 36 Points
7 Rick Elzinga (NED, YAM), 33 Points
8 Kay de Wolf (NED, HUS), 31 Points
9 Liam Everts (BEL, KTM), 31 Points
10 Jan Pancar (SLO, KTM), 20 Points

Share Article:

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Tumblr
Pinterest
Reddit
Email
Print

More News: Latest Headlines

More News: Latest Headlines

AMA Supercross

Aaron Plessinger Forced To Sit Out Remainder Of The 2024 Supercross Season

Motocross

Hamish Harwood Overcomes Hardship To Claim The 2024 New Zealand Motocross Championships

Motocross

Jed Beaton Wins The Final Battle But Loses The War At NZ Motocross Championships

Dirt Track

Juniors Impress Again At The 2024 New South Wales Junior Dirt Track Championship

Enduro

Steve Holcombe Edges Out Andrea Verona For EnduroGP Day Two Victory In Valpacos

MXGP

Jorge Prado And Liam Everts Rise To The Top At MXGP of Trentino

AMA Supercross

Cooper Webb And Haiden Deegan Claim Wins At Foxborough Supercross

Enduro

Winning Ride For Josep Garcia On Day One At Round Two Of EnduroGP

MXGP

Romain Febvre And Andrea Adamo Qualify Fastest For The MXGP of Trentino

Enduro

Josep Garcia Wins Second Super Test At EnduroGP Round Two In Portugal

Speedway

2024 FIM Speedway of Nations Semi-Final Draw Revealed

Industry

Australian Motorcycle Sales Decline In January–March 2024 Quarter

What's On This Week

AORC - R4
Enfield, Vic
Sunday, April 21st, 2024
AORC - R3
Enfield, Vic
Saturday, April 20th, 2024
FIM Speedway Grand Prix - Round 1
FIM Speedway GP of Croatia
Sunday, April 21st, 2024
Vic Senior MX Championships - Round 1
Portland, Vic
Sunday, April 21st, 2024
AMA Supercross Round 15
Lincoln Financial Field - Philadelphia, PA
Saturday, April 27th, 2024
AMA Supercross Round 14
Nissan Stadium - Nashville, TN
Saturday, April 20th, 2024

Featured:

Time to Pivot with Pivot Pegz?

First Look At The All New 2024 Beta 450RX

2024 Yamaha YZ250F Review

Enhance Your Bike’s Protection With Force Accessories Custom Clutch Cover

2023 Sherco 300 SE Factory Ride Review

Michelin StarCross 6 – Inspected

What's On This Week

AORC - R4
Enfield, Vic
Sunday, April 21st, 2024
AORC - R3
Enfield, Vic
Saturday, April 20th, 2024
FIM Speedway Grand Prix - Round 1
FIM Speedway GP of Croatia
Sunday, April 21st, 2024
Vic Senior MX Championships - Round 1
Portland, Vic
Sunday, April 21st, 2024
AMA Supercross Round 15
Lincoln Financial Field - Philadelphia, PA
Saturday, April 27th, 2024
AMA Supercross Round 14
Nissan Stadium - Nashville, TN
Saturday, April 20th, 2024