Calvin Vlaanderen had a challenging day at the office in what was the final race day of the 2018 MX2 World Championship. Under the sun shining over Imola’s Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, the Team HRC rider had to work hard to find his way through the pack after yesterday’s DNF in qualifying and was 12th and eighth at the flag in the two motos.
Calvin had a good jump out of the gate but, due to the poor gate-pick after yesterday’s retirement, he was only 22nd out of the first corner of race one. By the end of lap five, Vlaanderen was in the middle of a fierce battle halfway through the field in 14th position. He then rode his own race to finish 12th at the flag.
Race two unfolded in a very similar way for the 22-year-old from Cape Town, who had the near-impossible task of making his way through the pack at the start from the most-outside gate. On lap seven, Vlaanderen overtook Jacobi for twelfth place and was quickly promoted to eleventh when Marshal Weltin crashed out of the encounter. But before the chequered flag was deployed, he managed to pass Brian Strubhart Moreau and Richard Sikyna to finish eighth.
Vlaanderen’s first season with Team HRC ends with a sixth place in the final championship standings and six podiums (one win, one second and three thirds). He will now make a quick stop at home before flying to USA to represent the Netherlands at the 2018 MX of Nations, which will begin in less than a week (6-7 October) at Red Bud, Michigan.