2022 MXGP finally began with a bright but chilly British Grand Prix at Matterley Basin and Red Bull KTM Factory Racing opened their account for the season as Tom Vialle dashed to the second step of the podium in the MX2 class with the KTM 250 SX-F.
The sweeping and vast Matterley Basin circuit was ready for MXGP at the second attempt: the opening round of 20 races in 2022 had initially been postponed by one week due to stormy conditions across the UK. The delay brought significantly calmer winter weather to southern England and the 12th Grand Prix to take place at the Winchester circuit went ahead with a return to the traditional two-day format.
2020 MX2 World Champion Tom Vialle raced to 2nd position in the first qualification heat to take place in two years. It gave the Frenchman 2nd pick in the gate for Sunday’s two motos and he narrowly missed out on the holeshot in race one. Vialle ran a comfortable 2nd and kept Kay de Wolf at bay in the closing laps to secure 22 points. In the second moto the 21-year-old was again setting the pace. An exciting fight for the victory (and the overall GP win) was only decided on the last circulation when Vialle made a small mistake on the final tight hairpin corner. He crossed the line in 3rd to be runner-up overall.
In the MXGP category Red Bull KTM were missing the presence of world champion Jeffrey Herlings who is still recovering from recent left heel surgery. In his place on a temporary basis was former MX2 podium finisher Mathys Boisrame. The 23-year-old is negotiating his first term in the premier class but a fall in Saturday’s Qualification Heat led to a painful right shoulder with a broken ligament and he could not compete on Sunday.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing constructed a moving tribute to late MX2 racer Rene Hofer within their awning. The Austrian passed away in December.
MXGP now heads directly to Italy. The Tazio Nuvolari circuit in the town of Mantova hosted the final Grand Prix of 2021 in November and the shallow sand will play host to the second date of the season.
Tom Vialle, 2nd and 3rd for 2nd overall in MX2: “Not a bad result to start the season but I was a bit disappointed with the crash at the end of the second moto while trying for the win. If we consider that I’ve only been riding a month and a half and we are fine-tuning the new racebike then this was a good day. It was nice to be at the front and it was a bit of a surprise to have that good rhythm. A good GP for the confidence. Mantova next week and a track where we race a lot. We know it well and we will be ready.”
Results MX2 Great Britain 2022
1. Simon Laengenfelder (GER), GASGAS, 1-1
2. Tom Vialle (FRA), Red Bull KTM Factory Racing, 2-3
3. Jago Geerts (BEL), Yamaha, 4-2
4. Kay de Wolf (NED), Husqvarna, 3-5
5. Roan van der Moosdijk (NED), Husqvarna 6-4
Standings MX2 2022 after 1 of 20 rounds
1. Simon Laengenfelder 50 points
2. Tom Vialle (FRA), Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 42
3. Jago Geerts 40
4. Kay de Wolf 36
5. Roan van der Moosdijk 33
Results MXGP Great Britain 2022
1. Tim Gajser (SLO), Honda, 1-2
2. Jorge Prado (ESP), GASGAS, 4-1
3. Jeremy Seewer (SUI), Yamaha, 2-4
4. Maxime Renaux (FRA), Yamaha, 3-6
5. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED), Yamaha, 9-3
8. Thomas Kjer Olsen (DEN), KTM 8-10
Standings MXGP 2022 after 1 of 20 rounds
1. Tim Gajser 47 points
2. Jorge Prado 43
3. Jeremy Seewer 40
4. Maxime Renaux 35
5. Glenn Coldenhoff 32
8. Thomas Kjer Olsen 24