Herlings, MXGP World Champion in 2018 and 2021, continued his preparation and path back to world championship speed against a handful of Grand Prix rivals in Great Britain. The 28-year-old missed the 2022 campaign due to a broken left heel and subsequent reparative operations but first tasted a gatedrop in 2023 with a regional event near Arnhem in his native country last week. The trip to Hawkstone then represented a return to pre-season ‘normality’ for Herlings and a fixture he’d won previously in 2020.
He rode to 7th in the opening race after misjudging the grip from the Hawkstone start gate but then fired back to be runner-up in the second moto despite suffering a small crash. #84 will now enter the La Capelle-Marival International in France next weekend for his final sprint before MXGP fires-up with the Grand Prix of Argentina on March 11-12.
Jeffrey Herlings: “It could have been better to be honest but I know l require a bit of time to get back where we should be. 4th was not too bad but a crash and a bad start did not help. Next week should be better. They had a different start mesh here – compared to what we have in the GPs – and it was really slippery; I messed up the first moto. I fell in the second but otherwise the riding was pretty decent. We’ll work and work from this point.”