There is no rest for the Moto3 World Championship riders, as one week on from the Dutch TT the 2019 championship heads to the Sachsenring for the German Grand Prix, round nine of the year.
In Assen, Tony Arbolino (VNE Snipers) became the first person to repeat wins in thirteen races, as the Italian took his second victory in three GPs. At a circuit which should suit the Honda, although perhaps not with the firm way Arbolino has it set, the Italian has a chance to make it three wins in 2019, which could single him out as a clear championship favourite heading into the second half of the season.
Despite having more wins than any other rider, Arbolino is thirty-one points behind the championship leader, who remains Aron Canet (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team) notwithstanding the Spaniard finishing only twelfth in the Netherlands. Canet finished fifth in Sachsenring last year, and crashed the year before after starting from pole position. The #44 has a mixed record in Germany, but could do with it swinging his way this weekend with his points lead down to just seven points.
The rider sitting those seven points behind is the rider beaten in last lap fights by Arbolino in both of the #14’s wins: Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Leopard Racing). The #48 is without a win yet this season, although has been consistent in being there at the front. Only interference from other riders in the closing stages of races (Argentina, for example) or mechanical problems have prevented Dalla Porta from remaining in the top ten all season, but this is racing and anything can happen. Dalla Porta and his Leopard Racing team seem to be able to get his Honda working particularly well in a straight line. Whilst this might not be especially important in Sachsenring, the low power of Moto3 means that any minor gain can be an advantage come race time.
John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing) is the only ride racing in the Moto3 class who was on the Moto3 podium in Sachsenring last year. Whilst Marcos Ramirez was able to make it a KTM 2-3-4 last year and on more favourable Leopard Racing Honda machinery this year, he could be a threat for the podium at the circuit where he took his first top three back in 2017. Similarly, Jaume Masia (Bester Capital Dubai) was sixth last year and was unfortunate in Assen to retire with bike issues after running a strong race fighting for the podium. Celestino Vietti (SKY Racing Team VR46) is another rider who will be aiming to put a KTM on the podium, which would be the third time he were to do so in 2019 – a result which would be useful to the Italian rookie having dropped behind compatriot Arbolino in the points after Assen where he didn’t finish.
Featured Image courtesy of Gold and Goose/KTM