A three-week run of Grand Prix races has drawn to a close at the historic circuit of Teutschenthal, Germany. Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha MXGP have travelled from Russia, across to Latvia and then finally down to Germany with podium joy at each stop along the way. The Grand Prix of Germany was arguably the greatest showing that the duo, Arnaud Tonus and Gautier Paulin, have had this term.
The qualifying heat was a steady affair and one that consisted of great starts for both riders. Gautier Paulin used that to his advantage and went on to finish fourth, whereas Arnaud Tonus slipped to fourteenth after a small fall. The potential was abundantly clear though. Although a mediocre gate pick threatened to hinder him, Tonus was then the best-placed YZ450F rider in the first points-paying race as he progressed from the cusp of the top five to second at the chequered flag. It was an impressive showing and one that confirmed his status as a contender for wins in the toughest class on the planet.
The second moto was just as strong for Arnaud Tonus, as a third at the chequered flag helped him to secure second in the overall classification and stand up on the box for the fifth time this season. Tonus was joined on the podium by his teammate, Gautier Paulin, who was third overall at the Grand Prix of Germany. A pair of top-five finishes in the two motos left him on the third step of the box and ensured that the Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha MXGP team could celebrate their first double podium ever! A phenomenal achievement.
Arnaud Tonus now runs fourth in the championship standings, after gaining forty-two points at round ten, and is actually tied with Gautier Paulin, who runs in fifth. The Wilvo duo are one measly point down on the rider in third place with eight rounds remaining. Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha MXGP will now prepare for the lengthy trip over to Indonesia, as back-to-back events will be held in Asia at the start of July. Palembang, a new circuit, is their first stop on July 7.
Arnaud Tonus: “This weekend was a bit more challenging, because I had a tough qualifying race yesterday. I was pretty far out on the start and I had to dig deep going into the first corner, but I managed to be inside the top-five in both races. I had a good battle with the Yamaha riders in the first race, but I managed to pass Jeremy [Seewer] on the last lap when he made a mistake. I had another good race in race two and was able to finish on the box for the fifth time. It was also amazing to have Gautier [Paulin] up on the podium with me. We have a great atmosphere inside the team, so this is a very special moment for us and the team. I am super happy for him.”
Gautier Paulin: “I cannot thank the Monster Energy Wilvo Yamaha MXGP team enough. For the past few weeks it has been tough for me, so I have been off the podium. I had a big crash in Portugal, then was unlucky in France and then met the ground again in Russia. Last weekend in Latvia I felt more like myself, but I did not reach the points I wanted to. The feeling was there and it was a good training. It was tough, I had to fight hard for this one, but I know and have known my entire career that nothing comes for free, so I fought and now I am here. It feels great.”