A good day in the shallow sand at the Eurocircuit and the Grand Prix of Europe for Shaun with second place in the MXGP Qualifier for round three of eighteen on Easter Monday.
The Scot came to Valkenswaard trying to kick out the last remnants of a stomach virus picked up after the Thai round three weeks previously and which had dented his potential at Lyng for the first round of the British Championship last week. Blood tests before the Dutch fixture revealed that Shaun was still looking for 100% fitness but he tackled the damp and windswept sand hoping for the best.
An effective start for the twenty minute and two lap heat race slotted the twenty-eight year old into a top five position and from there he took advantage of mistakes by Tim Gajser and Kevin Strijbos to hold second place and briefly chase the rear wheel of Max Nagl. Shaun, competing at the venue where he scored his first Grand Prix moto victory in 2009, kept ahead of World Champion Romain Febvre for a personal best ranking in 2016.
“I’m really pleased with start and rode solidly,” he said. “The track was super one-liney today; you needed to be out and away and I made that happen.”
“Despite not feeling too great coming here I was not at my max and I’m pretty positive about tomorrow,” he added. “There is more in reserve than I thought. It would have been nice to get up behind Max but he ‘upped’ it a little bit and pulled away.”
As the wind and rain battered the Eurocircuit Sunday evening part of Monday’s grim weather forecast was already being realised. The first MXGP moto starts at 13.00 local time.