With the latest MXGP calendar out from Infront Moto Racing here at Live Motocross HQ we thought it would be a great time to have a catch up with Infront Moto Racing CEO David Luongo.
Live MX: Firstly, how has the off-season been for you especially still with the world dealing with the pandemic. How have things been at Infront Moto Racing?
David Luongo: “We have been in constant contact with all our organizers and federations for monitoring the situation. In fact, more than ever we didn’t have a break. We have to build a strong calendar to continue to deliver the best championship possible.”
Live MX: 2020 was a unique year as in the pandemic caused major disruptions to the motocross calendar not just for MXGP but national country Championships. It was great to see the 2020 MXGP season completed with the introduction of triple headers and mid-week races. Overall has was it for you and the team behind the events?
David Luongo: “It was in a way very challenging but also very exciting because it was the first time we had to manage 3 events in such a short time. Once again I would like to thank all the organizers and all Infront Moto Racing staff for their hard work. We managed to maintain the track perfectly with all the categories and the repetition of races. But we had also to put in place the Covid-19 test control, and all what was related to keep the sanitary bubble in place. I have to say that it was a great success. At the end, we organized 18 Grand Prix and all the champions deserve their titles!”
Live MX: The new calendar is out and there are some shocks to the schedule. Can you give a bit more information on this?
David Luongo: “There are no real surprises, we have just moved Oman to 2022 because by pushing the calendar forward we don’t have space in 2021, and the other MXGP events which remain are just postponed to October.”
Live MX: Looking ahead to this year how do you see the 2021 season as you have announced a new calendar with a delayed start due to the pandemic. Do you think we will see any more changes in the coming weeks and months?
David Luongo: “Honestly, this year will continue to be difficult and we will still have to wait some weeks to understand how we will be in May. Our target by moving the start of the championship is to gain time for hoping to have spectators allowance onsite. This is the key for professional sport events. We see every day the progression of the vaccination campaign worldwide. We hope that Europe will be in a much better position in May because we will reach a decent number of vaccinated people. It should give the right for events to host public again. But once again, we are monitoring the situation every day.”
Live MX: The Monster Energy FIM Motocross of Nations is set for Italy but has TBA next to it now. Could you tell us a little more about this please?
David Luongo: “We are working on a place that will be able to host this fantastic event in many different cases as we still have to understand what will be the situation in September with the number of spectators allowed onsite. The Monster Energy MXoN is the biggest Off Road event in the world and we are still confident to be able to host public without limitation. But in the case it wouldn’t be possible, or to have limitation of the number of spectators, we need a circuit that can adapt to it. We will communicate very soon on the location. What I can say is that it will be a track well known by the MXGP fans.”
Live MX: Is there any indication to where the round will be on September 19th, as there is no country assigned?
David Luongo: “We are not in a position to announce the venue as we are in discussion with several organizers.”
Live MX: Italy, China and Argentina are showing as TBA is this down to the pandemic and can you give us a bit more information or can we expect further information on this soon?
David Luongo: “I cannot communicate on those TBA as for now, here again, it will depend a lot of the evolution of the pandemic to choose the location in each country. “
Live MX: It’s great to see that Beta have joined MXGP with an official Factory Race Team in 2021. Do you think we will see more manufacturers join over the next 1 to 5 years?
David Luongo: “The MXGP World Championship is the best platform to develop motocross bikes. The work done since many years by Infront Moto Racing brought the level of competition to new highs every season. On top of that, its global coverage gives the possibility to the manufacturers to promote their product to the MX fans. I am very confident that in the upcoming years we will see more and more manufacturers joining MXGP.”
Live MX: Are there any plans to change the length of the MXGP calendar in the coming years and could we see USA on the calendar for a round?
David Luongo: “Everything is possible. For sure on a pure marketing exposure aspect, a longer championship would give much more visibility to the MXGP. It is seen in all the other major motorsport but also in other global sport. But also on the sporting aspect it would give more time to the riders to recover between the Grand Prix in case of injury, and for the team and Infront Moto Racing, it would give more time to work between the Grand Prix. But as for now, we are focusing on the actual situation.”
Live MX: Finally what are your predictions for this year in terms of MX2, MXGP and WMX Champions?
David Luongo: “Mmmm, as promotor, I cannot predict the winner 😉 But I can tell you that once again it will be a very exciting season. In MXGP all the top guns will be present, Tim Gajser will have to defend his title after his fantastic season, Jeffrey Herlings will be very motivated after his injury, but also Tony Cairoli, Jeremy Seewer, Glen Coldenhoff, Romain Febvre will be great challenger. In MX2, Vialle will have to confirm his title and as usual we will see new challengers to rise during the season, the whole Yamaha factory team will be very competitive with Geerts, Renaux and Benistant.”