Elf Marc VDS’ Sam Lowes secured his first Moto2 pole of the season and celebrated his first podium since Qatar at the Sachsenring on Sunday.
A well-needed and hard-fought result saw the Brit’s luck finally turn after a tough run in 2022, despite a broken screen and edge of seat duel with Moto3 Champion Pedro Acosta in the closing stages.
“I needed that one!” a relieved Lowes said from Germany. “I’m really happy to do it at this track. This track is complicated for me and also after the run of races I've had it was very important weekend. I'm so relieved, happy but relieved to get this result and before the summer break to give myself something to work on at Assen and into the summer.
“It was nice to have pole position and a podium,” he continued. “At the end I thought we could have done a little bit more but this is something every rider feels.
“Early in the race I had a bit of a neutral, hit a neutral in turn four and I smashed the screen. So did the whole race and I only had half the screen so I was blowing about. Luckily this track it's not so important.
“In the middle of race, I didn't ride great. I was a bit tight and I was struggling a bit with the front. At the end I sort of kept my pace, I felt like I could go a bit quicker but me and Pedro was having a battle - I kept passing him, he kept pushing me back so I didn't really get to show my pace, but in the end, I'm happy to take the podium. It was a good weekend for me.
“I had a bit more grip than Pedro, so down the waterfall I was on the outside and I tried to cut it back the last corner, I had a lot better exit than him because I had a bit more grip but then we just touched a little bit. Luckily, it looked bad but was not too much and we both stayed on and made the podium, it was great.”
While delighted to have made the podium, the 31-year-old believes it could have been more.
“Honestly I was just real slow in sector two and this was really difficult for me because then I couldn't, if I overtook they could pass me back,” he explained. “If I could just have improved sector two, then I could have, not gone with Augusto [Fernandez] but probably been on my own in second. So this is something I need to work on, watch the video back and try and understand because in the rest of the track my bike was working well and we were stronger. So thank you for the team for that!
“The work we did over the weekend and the start to the race were key. It sounds funny because of the experience I’ve got, but I just need to reset and build up again. This result is so important. Now I have something to build on. If I can go to the next race and get another one then I’ll go into the summer break with a completely different mindset. That will be really important for the rest of the season.
“You're not going into the weekend thinking, 'what's going to happen this time?’ I'm going thinking, 'I've got a nice result to build on' and that's a lot different attitude mentally. Because even the last few races, over the weekend I've been okay, I've been on the front row, been strong but then Sunday you wake up thinking, ‘What is it today?'
“Whereas now I can look at the last race, which will be here, build on it and get the ball rolling. The biggest thing for us racers is in the brain. There's a lot of fast guys but you just need to wait for the wave and ride it and hopefully we can do it now.”