KTM and Jorge Prado celebrated winning the 2018 FIM MX2 Motocross World Championship in Imola, Italy, during the final round of the series at the weekend. 17-year-old Prado has made history by achieving KTM’s 10th victory in 11 seasons in the lower capacity class with the KTM 250 SX-F.
Prado, who hails from Lugo, Spain, has excelled this season with the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Team. The KTM racer took his first red plate at round 14 of the series in the Czech Republic and went on to maintain his lead while amassing 12 overall victories plus five podium finishes to claim the championship title. KTM has won 30 of the 40 MX2 motos this year, with Prado’s main competitor having been the outgoing FIM MX2 Motocross World Champion, teammate and runner-up in the series, Pauls Jonass.
Both men have shown great sportsmanship throughout a tense year as they battled for the title, and with Jonass’ announcement that he would not race at the season finale due to injury, Prado, who had a significant lead in the standings, was announced as champion prior to the start of the weekend. The KTM star has gone down in the history books by adding his name to a long line of champions aboard the KTM 250 SX-F, and as the first Spanish rider ever to win a FIM Motocross World Championship in one of the principle classes. Prado celebrated in style with the entire Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Team during the race in Italy by taking his fourth 1-1 finish of the year.
KTM concludes an outstanding season in the FIM Motocross World Championship. The Austrian manufacturer secured first and second places in both classes, with Jeffrey Herlings and Tony Cairoli enjoying incredible success in MXGP aboard the KTM 450 SX-F. Herlings was crowned champion at the penultimate round of the series and closed off a memorable season by taking his 84th Grand Prix win and eighth consecutive 1-1 victory in Imola. KTM won 39 of the 40 MXGP motos in the 20-round calendar, whilst securing the manufacturers’ title in both classes.
Jorge Prado: “I knew about being World Champion on Thursday and it was a weird moment. I didn’t expect it and thought I’d race against Pauls at the final round, but I still did my best out there today and wanted to show why I won the world title. I really felt I was world champion after that first moto and in the celebration. Overall, I am so happy with the weekend and the way we ended the season – it has been a great year for the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Team. This has been a dream since I was very little; it is what my family and I have fought for over so many years, and we worked so hard to reach this goal. With the many interviews since we knew I was world champion and a whirlwind race weekend I don’t think it has really sunk in yet, but we will enjoy this fantastic moment. Over the next few days I’m sure I will feel it even more. Of course, there are so many people to thank; the team, the sponsors, my family, my supporters, and everyone who has helped us over the years to get here – it has been a very special weekend.”
Pit Beirer (KTM Motorsports Director): “It has been a fantastic season for KTM in the Motocross World Championship, and when it comes to the MX2 class, we are proud to continue to be the main contenders having enjoyed taking the series’ win in 10 of the last 11 championships. Jorge and Pauls have shown great sportsmanship in victory and defeat throughout the season, and once again we find ourselves as champions thanks to the hard work and dedication of our riders, team and everyone working on this project back at the factory. To be first and second in both classes is incredible. Jorge is an exceptional talent, and his approach to the season has been admirable; the future looks very bright for us together. Congratulations to Jorge, to his family and everyone involved. I’d especially like to thank Claudio De Carli and the entire Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Team for their hard work and dedication to achieving this goal. It’s a special moment to see a young rider we’ve nurtured come through and take a World Championship win, in what has been a very memorable year.”