News 2 Sep 2016

Jasikonis joins Strijbos at Suzuki for 2017 MXGP campaign

Townley substitute staying on with factory team next year.

Source: Supplied.

Source: Supplied.

Young Lithuanian rider Arminas Jasikonis has secured his position on the Suzuki World MXGP squad for 2017 after laying down impressive results as a fill-in rider for the injured Ben Townley.

The 18-year-old, who claimed a career-best seventh place MXGP moto finish in Assen last Sunday, will join Kevin Strijbos on the team and plans to step up his program for 2017 following the signing.

“It has always been a dream to reach grand prix and I think I am the first from Lithuania to reach this far,” said Jasikonis. “Now getting a contract for next year is ‘something else’. I’m really happy and I cannot quite believe it but I know the work really just begins now.

“Before riding was just about having fun and joking around…now I am really motivated and I have big expectations of myself. I will be working so hard over the winter and I’ll be doing everything the team advise me to do. I’ll be going big for next year.”

“I know I could do better in the previous GPs. I put a lot of pressure on myself because I wanted to stay for next year. There will still be pressure next season but everything will be pretty new and an adventure but I will be making the best out of it.”

Now a fully-fledged FIM Motocross World Championship contender, Jasikonis will tweak his program in preparation for his first full season with the factory Suzuki team.

“There won’t be too many big changes,” he added. “I’ll change physical trainer and I’m very thankful for what has been done for me so far, but we must move forward. I have changed my doctor as well and the set up is very nice and professional. I live only five minutes from the team and have been there for three years so that will stay.”

Former Suzuki World MXGP rider Townley, after coming out of retirement this season, recently announced he was stepping away from international racing altogether.