Just over three months after the conclusion of the 2021 season, the World Motocross Championship starts again this weekend (February 19-20), with the Team HRC duo of Tim Gajser and Mitch Evans heading to Matterley Basin, England for this 2022 opening round.
On a track that holds fond memories for both riders, this will be a good chance for them put on a strong showing, and try to start the season off on the right foot.
For Gajser, this will mean an attempt to win a moto here for the fourth year in succession and grab hold of the red plate, like he has for much of the past three years. Unfortunately, the #243 just missed out on the title last year, but he’ll be aiming for world title number five in 2022, with the long and flowy Matterley Basin venue being the perfect venue to begin his fight for this year’s MXGP championship.
Teammate Evans missed out on 2021 entirely but in his first outing for Team HRC in 2020, he took fifth overall, including a third place in moto one to really show why he deserved to ride the amazing CRF450R. Now though, after over a year of recovery, the Australian is back for a gate-drop once again and while there isn’t too much expectation placed on his shoulders, he still wants to go out there and show everyone he is still one of the best motocross riders on the planet.
In 2022, the MXGPs return to a two-day format, meaning that there are now six sessions for the riders to work upon settings and improve their setup. It starts with a free practice, and then a timed practice before the Saturday afternoon Qualification race (16:10). That race then determines the gate-pick for the two motos on Sunday afternoon (13:15 and 16:10), after a morning warm-up session.
While the weather forecast isn’t great, the Matterley Basin track is still a magnificent venue and hopefully a large number of fans will turn up and witness the beginning of what should be another intense year of the world motocross championship.