KTM has issued a fine and a warning to its own factory motocross racer Jeffrey Herlings for “certain behavioral issues” from the past two MX2 World Championship rounds.

Herlings currently leads the MX2 World Championship standings, winning five of seven rounds including eight of 14 motos.

KTM did not specify exactly what Herlings did, but the tipping point was dropping the F-bomb on live television in a post-race interview. In the interview, Herlings criticized rider Mel Pocock for blocking him during the second moto of the June 10 Portugal round. The FIM also issued Herlings a fine of 3000 euros (US$3742) for the interview (look for it after the jump).

Herlings was also involved in an incident with Yamaha racer Arnaud Tonus the previous round in France. Herlings passed Tonus on the inside but swept wide going into a turn, forcing Tonus into a crash. There are also unsubstantiated reports over social media that Herlings had an off-track incident with Tonus’ camp after the Portugal round (Herlings was reportedly also dating Tonus’ sister, making the alleged incident rather personal.)

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“While Jeffrey’s behavior was unacceptable we do understand that he was under pressure at the time and we hope that this will be a valuable lesson for him and will help him in his future as a factory rider,” says Pit Beirer, head of KTM Motorsports.

Here’s the interview from the Portugal round (warning: foul language):

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Herlings says he accepts his punishment.

“I realize that my behavior was out of line and I accept the sanctions,” says Herlings. “I have to remember that I’m a role model for aspiring young riders and I should to behave in a way that they respect me as a person as well as an athlete. Because of this I have asked KTM to donate the money from my fine to an appropriate children’s charity.”

[Source: KTM]