Team Netherlands went into the 73rd Monster Energy Motocross of Nations as heavy favourites and came out with their first ever victory in history as riders Glenn Coldenhoff, Jeffrey Herlings and Calvin Vlaanderen dominated the rest of the World.
Joining Team Netherlands for this special occasion was not only thousands of Dutch fans but also the King of the Netherlands. His Majesty King of The Netherlands Willem-Alexander took the opportunity to meet Youthstream President Mr Giuseppe Luongo, Youthstream CEO David Luongo, FIM Vice President Jacques Bolle and Organizer of the 2019 Monster Energy FIM MXoN Lee van Dam as well as take a picture with the Dutch team to mark this historic occasion.
Despite a rainstorm that lashed the white sand of Assen, thousands were in attendance with the stands of the TT-circuit filled with loud cheers and colours of the national flags. The atmosphere was incredible as 20 nations battled it out for pride and glory for their home country as well as the highly sought after Chamberlain trophy.
Team Netherlands’ Coldenhoff with a 1-1 score for the second year running, Herlings with 2-4 and Vlaanderen with 10-10 that saw them cruise to their win with 18 points (taking out the worst score of 10th).
Second overall was Team Belgium as Jeremy Van Horebeek, Kevin Strijbos and Jago Geerts were consistent enough for yet another podium with 47 points, and third overall was Team Great Britain with Shaun Simpson, Nathan Watson and Adam Sterry on 58 points.
Overall class winners were Team Slovenian’s Tim Gajser in the MXGP class with 1-2, Team Denmark’s Thomas Kjer Olsen in the MX2 class with 8-8 and Team Netherlands’ Glenn Coldenhoff in the Open class with his 1-1.
Team Spain’s Jorge Prado led the MXGP/MX2 race from Team Slovenian’s Tim Gajser, Team Italy’s Ivo Monticelli, Team German’s Tom Koch, and in fifth place Team Switzerland’s Jeremy Seewer. Team Netherlands‘ Jeffrey Herlings was in 13th, and Team USA’s Jason Anderson in 38th, the other Team USA rider Justin Cooper was back in last place after the two crashed into each other.
After four laps Prado held a two second lead over Gajser, then came Team Belgium’s Jeremy Van Horebeek, Seewer, Monticelli, Herlings, Team Australia’s Dean Ferris, Team France’s Gautier Paulin, Team Great Britain’s Nathan Watson and Team Australia’s Kyle Webster 10th. Anderson moved into 20th while Team Great Britain’s Adam Sterry found himself in trouble and back in 33rd place.
Webster’s bike got stuck in the mud and dropped well back in the field to 16th place as Cooper was still riding, but dead last.
Ferris went down and dropped to ninth place while after eight laps it was Prado leading with more than three seconds over Gajser. At lap 10 Gajser passed Prado for the lead while Seewer was third, followed by Van Horebeek in fourth and Monticelli in fifth. Herlings moved into fifth place and then passed Van Horebeek to move into fourth closing up on the leaders.
Herlings was on fire, two seconds a lap quicker than the leaders. After 14 laps it was Gasjer with six seconds over Herlings, then came Seewer, Van Horebeek, Paulin, Prado, Monticelli, Olsen, Fredriksen, and Vlaanderen into the top ten. Anderson was up to 14th place and Ferris 17th.
Herlings was right up on Gajser with two laps to go, as he moves into take the lead. As Geerts found himself in 20th place and then out of the race with a broken bike, Belgium suddenly dropped from second to fifth in the standings. Anderson moved up to 13thas Gajser took the win from Herlings and Seewer. The Netherlands going 2-10 for a big lead with Switzerland on 23 points and third were France also with 23 points.
Race 1 (MXGP + MX2) Top Ten: 1. Tim Gajser (SLO, Honda), 35:30.085; 2. Jeffrey Herlings (NED, KTM), +0:00.897; 3. Jorge Prado (ESP, KTM), +0:18.909; 4. Jeremy Seewer (SUI, Yamaha), +0:20.095; 5. Gautier Paulin (FRA, Yamaha), +0:30.079; 6. Jeremy Van Horebeek (BEL, Honda), +0:35.526; 7. Ivo Monticelli (ITA, KTM), +0:38.577; 8. Thomas Kjer Olsen (DEN, Husqvarna), +1:14.026; 9. Hakon Fredriksen (NOR, Yamaha), +1:50.041; 10. Calvin Vlaanderen (NED, Honda), +1:56.915.
In the Open/MX2 race Team Finland’s Harri Kullas led from Team Netherlands’ Glenn Coldenhoff, Team Great Britain’s Shaun Simpson, and Team Italy’s Alessandro Lupino. Team Netherlands’ Calvin Vlaanderen was 11th, Team USA’s Zach Osborne was 13thand his teammate Justin Cooper was 32nd. Coldenhoff quickly moved into the lead as Simpson also moved past Kullas, then came Jonass and Ullrich.
Jonass moved into third place and Vlaanderen did fly into eight place as he closed up on Osborne. Olsen also was on the move as he passed Vlaanderen and then passed Osborne. After four laps it was Coldenhoff with a 10 second lead, then Jonass, Simpson, Kullas and Ullrich.