Sachsenring, Germany

Sachsenring Saturday Round Up: On Injury Heroics, Confusing Race Pace, And Marquez' Master Manipulation

It has been a pretty brutal weekend for the MotoGP riders at the Sachsenring. With less than a week to recover after a punishing race in Assen, everyone is stiff, sore, and tired. But those who crashed in Assen or had a physical problem have it doubly tough, having to deal with the tight and tortuous layout of the Sachsenring circuit.

Such conditions inevitably create tales of motorcycling heroism. Taka Nakagami is one such, the LCR Honda rider still badly beaten up after his crash at Assen, where he was taken out by Valentino Rossi. Nakagami has a badly damaged left ankle, but is trying to ride anyway.

Having an injury on his left ankle is one of the worst possible injuries at the Sachsenring, for a couple of reasons. Firstly, because is mostly left corners, meaning that the left ankle is bearing much of the load for a large part of the lap, riders leaning much of their weight on their inside leg through the corner. And secondly, because there is so much gear shifting to do, riders going up and down through the box through the tight and twisty circuit.

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2019 Sachsenring MotoGP FP4 Result: Viñales Harasses Consistent Marquez

The final practice session for the premier class heated up, mostly literally, and more realistic tyre choices filtered through, the softs mostly abandoned in their blankets to rest for qualifying. Presumably tired of Fabio Quartararo stealing his thunder, Marc Marquez found half a second on the competition early in the session and then wore them down with scarily consistent low to mid 1:22s.

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2019 Sachsenring Moto2 FP3 Result: Binder Settling At The Front

The final chance for the intermediate class to find some pace was accompanied by sun but not everyone got to fully enjoy the conditions. Tom Luthi did it from the top of the timesheets until the top 14 shootout brought lots of red sectors but only Brad Binder followed it all the way through. The KTM rider took over the lead in the final handful of minutes, courtesy of the only 1:23 time of the day. Luthi kept second position, a tenth and a half off the leader and only narrowly ahead of Remy Gardner.

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