INTERVIEW: Motocross up-and-comer Jago Geerts
Within the second 12 months of the FIM 500cc motocross world championship, Belgian Rene Baeten gained that nation’s first world title over Invoice Nilsson and Sten Lundin in 1957. Baeten, who misplaced his life in a motocross crash in 1960, had an enduring affect: Belgium has since amassed an astonishing 52 FIM motocross championships. With racers corresponding to Baeten, Joel Robert, Roger DeCoster, Harry Everts, Gaston Rahier, Andrea Malherbe, Eric Geboers, Stefan Everts and Joel Smets (to call bit just a few), the small Euopean nation has racked up 24 500cc, 18 250cc and 10 125cc FIM gold medals.
Nevertheless, a Belgian rider has not gained a title since Steve Ramon received the job carried out in 2008. Enter Jago Geerts. Aged 19 and already a former Junior Motocross world champion in addition to an EMX 125cc champion, the 19-year-old, now signed to the Kemea Yamaha Official MX2 workforce once more for 2020, was third total on this 12 months’s FIM MX2 sequence. And in a cool call-out to his Belgian motocross heritage, Geerts’ father Herman was the tuner to former grand prix star Marnicq Bervoets, who simply occurs to be the Kemea Yamaha workforce supervisor. It’s a small world!
With all of his expertise within the sport, how was your father as a race dad? What did he educate you and advise you on as you progressed within the sport?
My dad has a number of expertise in motocross, so he was one of the best race dad and trainer that I may think about. He all the time stays calm and relaxed. But when he has some ideas or sees me doing one thing unsuitable, he’ll inform me and provides me the fitting recommendation. My dad is straightforward to work with.
How is Marnicq Bervoets as a workforce supervisor?
Marnicq is an efficient man. He all the time desires that the riders really feel good and should you ask him one thing he’ll give his recommendation and he’ll strive that can assist you as a lot as doable. Clearly he’s additionally actually skilled, so it’s all the time good to speak with him concerning the races.
The Kemea workforce seems to be a fantastic match for you. How do you are feeling concerning the workforce and your environment?
I signed in 2017 with the Monster Vitality Kemea Yamaha racing workforce. Instantly once I began to work with the workforce I had a superb feeling and that simply by no means went away. The workforce works professionally however there’s nonetheless a relaxed and enjoyable environment. It’s simply how I prefer it. They don’t put an excessive amount of strain on the riders and that’s additionally a superb benefit I feel.
Inform me about your 2019 season. You began out within the prime 10, however 4 or 5 rounds into the sequence, you persistently had been inside the highest three. season for you?
Sure and the season didn’t actually begin that good. On the first two rounds I made a number of errors and that value me a number of factors. However spherical three was within the Netherlands and I actually like that observe. I received my first podium of 2019 there and that’s the place it began to go in the fitting path. It was an actual confidence increase for me as a result of i knew that I had the velocity however I simply made to a lot errors within the first two rounds. So after that it went higher and higher and in France I received my first race win and went second total. That’s actually the spotlight of the season for me. I ended up third total within the championship and I received six podiums this 12 months. Sure, I’m actually happy with my season.
How did you are feeling about your competitors in 2019?
The extent in MX2 was actually excessive this 12 months. In fact there was Jorge Prado who gained nearly each race. Solely a pair riders managed to beat him and I used to be considered one of them. However there have been 5 to 10 riders who had the potential to complete on the rostrum. It was tough to foretell who would find yourself on the rostrum on the finish of the weekend in order that made it additionally thrilling.
You’ve gained all alongside in your younger profession — 125cc world title and EMX. Do you count on to win in 2020?
Yeah, I gained a pair EMX championships. In 2014 I gained on the 85cc and in 2016 on the 125cc. 2016 was my most profitable 12 months but. I additionally gained the world championship and the open Dutch championship that 12 months. For 2020 my objective is once more to combat for the general podium within the MX2 class. If the whole lot goes nicely I might need an opportunity to change into world champion. However that’s nonetheless far-off now. I simply need to have a superb winter after which we’ll see.
Who will it’s a must to beat to make a run on the title in 2020?’
My rivals from this 12 months shall be robust once more for certain. Solely Prado moved as much as the 450 class. There shall be some new riders that transfer as much as the MX2 class so I’ll have competitors sufficient, I feel.
What’s going to you throughout this low season?
I went on a small vacation however now I’m coaching once more for the following season. Tthe first race is coming quickly. In January we shall be going to Sardinia the place I’ll do some coaching and trip my first race of the season.
Would you ever wish to race within the USA?
My focus lies on the world championship in the intervening time. I feel for myself that I desire to only keep on this planet championship. However for certain I wish to do some coaching within the USA and possibly I’ll change my ideas after that. I don’t actually give it some thought now, that’s one thing for the long run.
Do you get a number of nationwide consideration?
Motocross modified so much in Belgium the final 20 years. Earlier than nearly each village had a motocross observe. Now there are, I imagine, solely 5 motocross tracks left. It’s a disgrace to see that such a motocross-minded nation can change a lot. There may be nearly no media consideration left for motocross and there are much less and fewer riders. There are nonetheless a pair actually gifted riders left in Belgium so I hope we will change the destructive environment that’s round motocross now.