Following nineteen rounds in sixteen different countries, the Wilvo Yamaha MXGP squad travelled to Italy for the twentieth and final round of the FIM Motocross World Championship. The Grand Prix of Italy, held at a historic road-race facility in Imola, played host to the memorable event.
The man-made circuit flattened the playing field and gave everyone a chance to shine. Jeremy Seewer and Shaun Simpson, the two Wilvo Yamaha MXGP riders, stole the show with an amazing battle in the qualifying heat on Saturday. The pair were separated by a matter of seconds and finished in sixth and seventh at the chequered flag. Seewer got the better of his teammate in the end and therefore had a slightly better spot on the starting line when the first moto fired into life at midday.
Jeremy Seewer actually put that to good use too, as he started on the verge of the top five and just ahead of his teammate. An incident with another rider caused that to change, however, as he re-joined the moto in tenth and had a significant amount of work to do. Seewer was not to be deterred though and moved up to sixth at the end, after making a pass on Shaun Simpson on the final lap, which set him up well to acquire a good overall ranking.
It was quite clear that Jeremy Seewer was ready to end the season with a bang, as he charged into the first turn and jockeyed for the holeshot in moto two. Seewer ended up getting caught up in a fall, however, and therefore started the race in dead last. Although conditions were not ideal for making progress, he clawed his way back to eighth overall and secured the same spot in the championship standings. Seewer enjoyed many highs during his maiden term in the premier division and that end result reflects that.
Shaun Simpson also had an effective day aboard his steed at the Grand Prix of Italy. The first-moto was particularly solid, as he duked it out for a position inside of the top five for the duration. It was an extremely exciting race that ended with him in seventh position. The second race was similar too, as he spent a lot of the time in the top five before reaching the chequered flag in seventh. A brace of sevenths left him in seventh overall on the day, unsurprisingly, and helped him secure fifteenth in the championship standings.
The FIM Motocross World Championship may have concluded, but Jeremy Seewer has an important outing in the United States next weekend. Seewer will represent Team Switzerland, once again, at the prestigious Motocross of Nations.
Shaun Simpson: “It is unexpected if I am totally honest. This kind of track is not a track that would typically suit me, but I went out there and I put absolutely everything into those two motos. I put a little bit too much into the first race and I was really disappointed when Jeremy [Seewer] got me on the last lap again. The last few laps of the second race let me down, which is a bit of a shame, but on a positive note it was a great way to end the season on a high note. I definitely feel I have the pace to run inside the top five and that is extra motivation to come out swinging next year.”
Jeremy Seewer: “I really enjoyed this weekend. I had some good battles in both races and I found this track quite fun to ride. It is a little small for a GP track, but it is a lot of fun. People say you cannot pass, but if you are quicker then you can pass. In the first race I had a good start and was passing another rider for third-place before I got involved in a racing incident where our lines came together and we crashed. I hurt my knee a little bit, but it is nothing too bad. In the final moto, I had the best start of the season and was going for the holeshot but lost my wheels at the first corner and got hit. I had to start from dead last, so I did not push too hard because it did not matter for the championship anymore. I am happy to be healthy and I look forward to the ‘Nations next weekend.”