Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Team rider Romain Febvre crashed early on Sunday in the first moto at Teutschenthal while teammate Jeremy Van Horebeek crashed heavily in race two and left the moto.
Febvre crashed in the first moto and came off his YZ450FM in the middle of the first turn, falling quickly behind the pack on the rutted and tricky Teutschenthal racecourse. Strong winds picked up on the day and blew the track dry, stiffening deep ruts and creating dozens of lines for Febvre to choose as he picked his way clear from 27th after lap one to 10th at the finish.
“I took a bad start, and when you are behind it’s really difficult to create new lines. It’s not so difficult to change lines, but with the guys in front of you kicking up stones it becomes really painful, Febvre said.
“Nobody feels pressure from having the red plate, becuase it’s a positive motivator, and Gajser and I are used to having it. It’s gone, but there is still a long way to go.”
Van Horebeek’s strong starts continued from an engine overhaul with team mechanics before last week’s MXGP of Latvia, and the Belgian rider carried speed through the corners, bouncing in and out of the ruts to finish 6th in moto one.
In the second moto Febvre held back until lap four and then began to work his way up from 7th to 3rd, finding himself in a tight duel with Russian rider Evgeny Bobryshev for 2nd in the final two laps behind a resurgent Tony Cairoli of Italy. Van Horebeek held steady in 5th but caught a strong gust of wind on a tall jump and was blown off track on the landing, crashing heavily and damaging his handlebars. Van Horebeek left the second moto after 11 laps and finished 29th, with deep bruising to his arm.
“I crashed in the wind on a big jump and came off the track in the landing. In addition to the difficult lines on the track there was also a really big wind today, and that made it hard for riders in some of the turns,” said Horebeek.
“My starts improved all weekend, and the work we did before Latvia is paying off. I went to Italy last week to do some more tests, and the team worked really hard to make the changes to the engine. We are getting there.”
Kemea Yamaha Official MXGP rider Valentin Guillod rode in the middle of the pack during the first moto, but foud his true speed in Germany during the late race, rising quickly to 4th and holding a high speed with the leaders until finishing 5th behind Tim Gajser of Slovenia and ahead of Max Nagl of Germany. Guillod’s second moto in Teutschenthal is the Swiss rider’s highest placing of 2016 and put him 10th overall at MXGP Germany.
Febvre’s second moto saved some points in the Championship Standings, and the French rider is now eight back from Gajser to find himself in 2nd after seven rounds. Van Horebeek slipped two spots to 6th overall and Guillod climbed one spot to 9th.