Team HRC’s Tim Gajser put in a strong qualification race at the MXGP of Germany, winning in comfortable fashion to take first gate-pick into tomorrow’s points-scoring motos. Teammate Mitch Evans backed up his fellow Honda CRF450R rider by finishing fifth in a display that had long been coming from the Australian.
Coming into Teutschenthal, both riders were confident of turning around their recent run of results and that confidence was immediately evident as they put in laptimes to give them first (Gajser) and fourth (Evans) gate-pick for the qualification race. The gap at the front wasn’t quite as dominant as his 1.7 second lead in the French timed practice last week, but this time he was able to translate the laptime, and consequential first gate-pick into a holeshot in the qualification race, from where he never looked back. Putting in laptimes over a second faster than his nearest challengers, he quickly pulled out a comfortable lead and controlled the moto until the end.
It was his first qualification race victory since round five at the MXGP of Trentino, so he was long overdue and he’ll be hoping it is a positive omen as he recorded his first one-one of the season at that round. With first gate-pick in both races tomorrow, two strong starts should also give him the platform he needs to extend his championship lead even further as the championship moves into its second half.
At one stage Team HRC riders sat one and two in timed practice and although Evans eventually ended up fourth, it was a sign of things to come because the two Honda CRF450R swept around the first turn of the qualification race in first and third position. Evans tried his hardest to get into second place early on but settled into a strong pace in third, hoping to make the most of any mistakes. As the race went on, he did drop down to fifth but he is still fully capable of getting a good jump tomorrow and that looks to be crucial as passing is at a premium at this tricky Teutschenthal circuit.
With tomorrow’s weather forecast also looking good, the track should be similar to today which the riders will first checkout in a warm-up session at 10:45. Their attention will then focus on the two motos at 14:15 and 17:10 local time where there is the real possibility of both Team HRC riders challenging for podium positions.
|1||Gajser Tim||243||SLO||Team HRC - MXGP||Honda||25:14.992|
|2||Jonass Pauls||41||LAT||Standing Construct GasGas Factory Racing Team||GasGas||0:04.142|
|3||Prado Garcia Jorge||61||SPA||Red Bull GasGas Factory Racing||GasGas||0:05.861|
|4||Seewer Jeremy||91||SWI||Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team||Yamaha||0:07.445|
|5||Evans Mitch||43||AUS||Team HRC - MXGP||Honda||0:17.757|
|6||Febvre Romain||3||FRA||Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing||Kawasaki||0:23.016|
|7||Fernandez Ruben||70||SPA||Honda 114 Motorsports||Honda||0:28.565|
|8||Jacobi Henry||29||GER||JM Honda Racing||Honda||0:30.415|
|9||Coldenhoff Glenn||259||NDL||Monster Energy Yamaha Factory MXGP Team||Yamaha||0:32.183|
|10||Van Horebeek Jeremy||89||BEL||Beta SDM Corse MX Team||Beta||0:36.719|
|11||Tixier Jordi||911||FRA||JT911 KTM Racing Team||KTM||0:39.249|
|12||Watson Ben||919||GBR||Kawasaki Racing Team MXGP||Kawasaki||0:42.157|
|13||Bogers Brian||189||NDL||Standing Construct Husqvarna Factory Racing Team||Husqvarna||0:46.696|
|14||Vlaanderen Calvin||10||NDL||Gebben Van Venrooy Yamaha Racing||Yamaha||0:48.083|
|15||van Doninck Brent||32||BEL||Riley Racing||Yamaha||0:52.398|
|16||Guadagnini Mattia||101||ITA||Husqvarna Junior Racing Maddii||Husqvarna||0:53.555|
|17||Beaton Jed||14||AUS||F&H Racing Team||Kawasaki||0:55.044|
|18||Koch Tom||226||GER||KTM Kozak Team||KTM||1:02.679|
|19||Östlund Alvin||161||SWE||JK Racing Yamaha Active||Yamaha||1:08.672|
|20||Gole Anton||297||SWE||JWR Honda Racing||Honda||1:09.705|