JD Beach seized the Cup lead with a great win at the German round of the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup while arch rival Luis Salom fell twice and scored no points at the Sachsenring. The 16 year old American victor now has a 7 point advantage over the 16 year old Spaniard with just 2 races remaining.
Beach had to fight all the way and crossed the line just ahead of 13 year old Japanese Daijiro Hiura and 17 year old Briton Matthew Hoyle. Just off the podium was German 15 year old Daniel Kartheininger who was only 1.5 seconds behind the winner after a superb fight that saw the quartet swap places several times at most corners.
The 5th place struggle was even more desperate with 8 teenagers fighting for it and 2 crashing at the second to last corner. Success went to the 15 year olds, Frenchman Nelson Major taking 5th ahead of South African Mathew Scholtz and another Frenchman Florian Marino.
The race and perhaps the championship was, to an extent, decided at the first corner as Norwegian Sturla Fagerhaug crashed and took out Cup leader Salom. Fagerhaug's race was over but Salom remounted at the back of the field only to fall again as he tried to get back in the points. Fagerhaug had set out to banish the slow starts that blighted too many of his races this year. "I got off the line well for once and went into the first corner at the same speed I normally do but I guess with only 3 right handers the tyre wasn't hot enough after the warm up laps and with the track colder than yesterday it just slid away," said the 16 year old. "I'm sorry for taking out Luis."
The first lap ended with Kartheininger leading from Hoyle and Beach with Hiura back in 10th. Beach had said after practice that he needed to learn a bit more about the track and hoped to do it in the race by following the other guys. He showed himself a quick learner by grabbing the lead on lap 3. "I usually go better in the race than I do in practice and it just felt right," said Beach who had both Nicky Hayden and Casey Stoner cheering him on the podium.
"I couldn't get away from the guys and then later in the race the bike was sliding around quite a lot and I was just keeping it together," said Beach. "I saw 3 laps to go and then the next time round it was 1 lap and I thought I'd better get going. I was in front and just put my head down. I'd been thinking that if it did come down to the last lap Cameron (Beaubier) took the lead with just two corners to go last year and I could try to do something like that but I didn't have to."
Though he now has a 15 point advantage all riders have to discount their worst score of the season and with Salom dropping his zero from this race Beach has to loose his 8 points from Assen so has only a 7 point buffer with two races at Brno to decide things. "I like Brno, I had my best result there last year (8th) and I am not going there thinking about the Cup, it is just 2 more races. I am not going to let myself get pressured about it."
Hiura was happy enough with his second. "It was a great race, I had a lot of work to do because I made a bad start but it was OK. I really tried to win but JD was so good in that last lap I just couldn't get close."
Hoyle was a bit frustrated with his 2nd 3rd place in as many races. "I did what I could, pushed all the way. The bike was moving around a lot at the end, we all were. It was a great race and I 'm enjoying it so much more now and looking forward to another 2 good races at Brno and try for a double win," concluded the Brno lap record holder who was 2nd there last year."
Kartheininger was not quite as philosophical about the result. "I'm disappointed, from half way through I had no rear tyre. I tried to get Matty just to follow me so we didn't fight so hard but he wanted to pass at every corner and my tyre was just destroyed."
1 25 59 JD BEACH USA Red Bull Rookie KTM 27'40.414 143.265
2 20 46 Daijiro HIURA JPN Red Bull Rookie KTM 27'40.615 143.248 0.201
3 16 32 Matthew HOYLE GBR Red Bull Rookie KTM 27'40.957 143.219 0.543
4 13 3 Daniel KARTHEININGER GER Red Bull Rookie KTM 27'41.929 143.135 1.515
5 11 69 Nelson MAJOR FRA Red Bull Rookie KTM 27'53.704 142.128 13.290
6 10 20 Mathew SCHOLTZ RSA Red Bull Rookie KTM 27'53.809 142.119 13.395
7 9 21 Florian MARINO FRA Red Bull Rookie KTM 27'54.974 142.020 14.560
8 8 6 Peter SEBESTYEN HUN Red Bull Rookie KTM 27'55.148 142.005 14.734
9 7 92 Cristian TRABALON SPA Red Bull Rookie KTM 27'56.005 141.933 15.591
10 6 28 Markus REITERBERGER GER Red Bull Rookie KTM 28'08.130 140.913 27.716
11 5 74 Kevin CALIA ITA Red Bull Rookie KTM 28'10.118 140.748 29.704
12 4 36 Nico THÖNI AUT Red Bull Rookie KTM 28'13.074 140.502 32.660
13 3 24 Harry STAFFORD GBR Red Bull Rookie KTM 28'23.780 139.619 43.366
14 2 52 Adam BLACKLOCK GBR Red Bull Rookie KTM 28'36.063 138.620 55.649
15 1 11 Niklas AJO FIN Red Bull Rookie KTM 29'26.517 134.660 1'46.103
16 30 Dylan MAVIN AUS Red Bull Rookie KTM 28'02.381 133.540 1 lap
84 Jakub KORNFEIL CZE Red Bull Rookie KTM 26'22.026 142.011 1 lap
68 Sasuke SHINOZAKI JPN Red Bull Rookie KTM 6'18.119 139.803 14 laps
39 Luis SALOM SPA Red Bull Rookie KTM 6'32.384 134.721 14 laps
99 Joshua ELLIOTT IRL Red Bull Rookie KTM 3'11.813 137.796 16 laps