In what has been the most competitive season in the history of the FIM Motocross World Championship, Honda Gariboldi’s Tim Gajser has locked up the MXGP world title in his rookie year at the tender age of nineteen years old.
What’s even more impressive is that the Slovenian star has now gone back-to-back titles in two different classes in the space of twelve months, and he is the first rider to do so since Greg Albertyn, who won the 125cc title in ’92 and 250cc title in ’93.
Just over ten years ago, the name Tim Gajser was recognized in Europe after he finished third in the European Championship 65cc class at the callow age of seven years old. In 2007, the Slovenian entered that same championship and blitzed everyone for his first European Championship title.
The jump to the 85cc class didn’t go as smoothly as he had hoped but after one year of racing on the bigger bike he had finally come to grips with it and won the European Championship 85cc title in 2009.
In 2010 he continued to use the European Championship as a stepping-stone to the pro ranks and made his debut in the premier amateur series the EMX125.
It only took him a year to make waves on the 125cc, for the next year he finished second in the European Championship. In 2012, the then fifteen year old dominated everything. He added the European Championship EMX125 title to his resume and was also the FIM Junior Motocross 125cc World Champion in that same year.
In 2013 he made his debut in the FIM Motocross MX2 World Championship where eleventh was his best result, at the MXGP of Germany, and after missing a few rounds he finished twentieth overall.
In 2014, Honda Gariboldi picked him up and with their support he was the breakout star of that year, his first full season in MX2, with nine top five overalls and an amazing six podium finishes.
After finishing fifth in 2014, Gajser lined up last year as a name to watch, and although things didn’t get off to the best of starts at the opening rounds of the 2015 FIM Motocross World Championship which took place in Qatar, Thailand and Patagonia Argentina, he managed to turn things around when he returned to Europe and claimed his first ever MX2 race win and first ever grand prix overall at the MXGP of Trentino.
A couple of rounds later, a concussion ruled him out of the MXGP of Great Britain, which left him in eighth position in the championship standings 139 points off of the lead. At the following grand prix in Villars sous Ecot, the MXGP of France, he bounced back and finished second overall.
Proving his worth, Gajser kept the ball rolling at the following three rounds with a trio of grand prix victories, which launched him to second place in the championship standings. After his victory at the MXGP of Sweden things started to crumble ever so slightly as he struggled to crack the top five.
Fortunately the eighteen year old was able to regroup heading into the final four rounds where he managed to put in a strong finish to the season, where he clinched his first ever world title.
This year, Gajser, whose nicknames are ‘Tiga’ or GT243, was nothing short of extraordinary. It’s hard to believe he is only nineteen years old as he has demonstrated the maturity of a world war veteran with his whopping 247 laps led, 8 qualifying race wins, 15 main event race wins, 7 grand prix wins, and incredible 15 podiums from a possible 17. There is no rider more deserving of the MXGP crown this year than Tim Gajser, the kid who is revolutionizing our sport.