There is so much that goes on in the second half of the season. The exciting action keeps rolling on, of course, and then contracts are being discussed behind the scenes. In order to stay on top of the latter, this column is going to feature all of the decisions that have been made. There will be no rumours in here, as this is solely for the facts. Speculation will be in additional columns on MX Vice.
Michele Cervellin: Michele Cervellin moved to the SM Action Yamaha team ahead of the Grand Prix of Great Britain, after starting the season with Martin Racing Technology, and has now confirmed that he will race for the squad next year as well. With Maxime Renaux also under contract for the new season, it remains to be seen whether Alvin Ostlund will continue with the Italian outfit or not. Ostlund sustained an ankle injury in May, so has not had much of a chance to prove himself, but started riding again ten days ago.
Julien Lieber: Julien Lieber has impressed in his maiden season in the premier class, despite the fact that he spent the winter on the sidelines and missed out on valuable testing time. It is hardly surprising that Monster Energy KRT have re-signed him for next year, with that in mind, as he clearly has the potential to slot into the top ten regularly and even crack the top five from time to time. Clement Desalle also has a contract for the next twelve months, so the official Kawasaki outfit is not going to change at all next year.
Maxime Renaux: The SM Action Yamaha outfit have made their first signing for the new season. Maxime Renaux, who resides in the EMX250 division currently, will step up to the MX2 class with the team for next year. Renaux has competed in some MX2 rounds as a wildcard this season and had some success, such as a tenth overall at the previous round in Czechia, so it is hardly surprising that the Italian-based team have locked up his services rather early. There are no other riders contracted to the team at this time, but one would presume that Michele Cervellin will stay beneath the awning.
Darian Sanayei: Kawasaki have certainly been busy. Darian Sanayei, who has moved up through the ranks on green machinery, has renewed his contract with Bike It DRT Kawasaki and will spend his final year in the FIM Motocross World Championship with the team. Sanayei will age out of the class at the end of the next year and it is thought that he will return to the United States at that point. Before that time comes, however, he hopes to pick up a handful of Grand Prix wins and a world title. It is unknown who will be his teammate at the time of writing.
Alessandro Lupino: Alessandro Lupino has arguably been the greatest surprise in the FIM Motocross World Championship this season. Most presumed that some high-profile teams would approach him with a deal for next year, because of the progress that he has made, but he has just signed a two-year extension with the Gebben Van Venrooy Kawasaki outfit. The Dutch outfit have not confirmed who their second rider will be at the time of writing, but there will obviously be a new name beneath the awning. It is thought that an established rider could join the Dutch squad in the off-season.
Maxime Desprey: Maxime Desprey has had a bit of a breakthrough year, much like his teammate, but will be moving onto pastures new next season. Desprey will be moving away from the FIM Motocross World Championship and focus solely on the domestic scene in France, now that he has signed a deal with the Honda SR outfit. The deal includes the indoor series, which is a successful championship that is run through the winter, and then the outdoors. Desprey runs nineteenth in the MXGP series currently, but is nursing an ankle injury that was sustained prior to the Czech Grand Prix.
Glenn Coldenhoff: Glenn Coldenhoff was one of the biggest pieces of the silly-season puzzle and other dominos should begin to fall, now that he has slotted into place. Coldenhoff signed a two-year deal with the Standing Construct KTM outfit that will ensure that will ensure his departure from Red Bull KTM will not be too turbulent. Coldenhoff did not really have option to stay beneath the factory awning, of course, as they had to make room to ensure that Pauls Jonass could jump up to the premier division.
Jeremy Van Horebeek: Jeremy Van Horebeek wrote a heartfelt statement on social media, which confirmed that he has been told that there is not going to be room for him beneath the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing awning next season. Where is he going to go? The team below this paragraph is an option, of course, but there are no firm rumours at this point. It is early! Van Horebeek has struggled with injuries since the final moto at the second round, hence why he has not returned to the top five since then. The way that he started the season was solid though!
Standing Construct: Standing Construct returned to the Grand Prix paddock this season with support from KTM and have done a pretty good job, hence why the Austrian manufacturer felt the need to chuck a new contract onto the table. The multi-year deal will ensure that the pair continue their relationship for many years to come. Look for Standing Construct KTM to appear in this column a lot more in the coming months, as a ton of riders are chasing after their second spot. Kevin Strijbos is expected to retire at the end of the season and vacate that.
Max Anstie: Max Anstie confirmed in the MX Vice post-race podcast at the Grand Prix of Lombardia that he is not going to return to the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing awning next season. Anstie does not have a contract signed at the time of writing, however, so his name will pop back up in this column at some point. There is no doubt that he will be just fine, following that impressive showing at the previous race, and he has already been linked to a couple of high-profile seats as well. It will be a couple of months until his plans are made official.
Antonio Cairoli: This one was a surprise. Antonio Cairoli and Red Bull KTM announced a new deal before the current term had even started, which would ensure that he will remain at the highest level until the end of 2020. This is huge, because he will continue to go up against Jeffrey Herlings in the years to come. Although there are some who like to speculate that he is going to pull the plug early, for that very reason, it does not seem as though there are any signs of that. There is not going to be too much movement on the MXGP side of the Red Bull KTM awning.
Words: Lewis Phillips | Lead Image: KTM Images/Ray Archer