#MalaysianGP: Positive conclusion in hot Sepang
On Sunday, a demanding long journey with four races within one month comes to an end and NTS RW Racing GP riders Joe Roberts and Steven Odendaal were close to what they were aiming for at the challenging Sepang circuit.
It was a long race day in Malaysia, starting very early this morning due to changed schedule in short-term, seeing starting time of the race two hours earlier than initially foreseen. In retrospect, the race direction did the right decision to do so as the races were held in dry conditions.
Meanwhile the Dutch based NTS RW Racing GP outfit with Joe Roberts and Steven Odendaal was all-set to tackle the demands due to the tremendous conditions in Sepang from eighth row, both making up ground early on in the race to close in P18 for the Los Angeles native Roberts whereas South African Odendaal failed to finish in the top 20 just narrowly.
In the second last race of the season, Italian rider Francesco Bagnaia has been crowned new champion in the intermediate class. So, congratulations to him and his SKY Racing Team VR46. The season ends in two weeks with the traditional finale in Valencia.
#4 Steven ODENDAAL (NTS RW Racing GP, NTS), 21st:
“It was such a difficult race for us because I battled a lot with front end and rear grip issues, especially towards the end of the race. These temperatures had a massive factor to the grip though this was the same for everyone. Honestly, there is nothing more to say just that I think that I did my best during the race I could and finished it to collect more information. So, let’s try to come back stronger to Valencia.”
#16 Joe ROBERTS (NTS RW Racing GP, NTS), 18th:
“This race wasn’t so bad for us even if we didn’t end up for what we were aiming for. But we were close to the points positions again which was good. At one point in the race was I thinking that I could get in front of these guys ahead of me but honestly, I didn’t have anything left in the last couple of laps to do so as I started to get a little bit overheated. But apart from that, it was a positive weekend overall because we have shown good practices and we have been inside the top 15 several times. I think for the first time in Malaysia this is not so bad, and I definitely can understand what I have to do for next year, preparing for this particular race.”
Jarno JANSSEN (Team manager):
“For sure, Malaysia is a killer to race and to give your maximum over a 40-minutes race distance here is incredible. Unfortunately, both Joe and Steven found themselves coming into some difficulties towards the end of the race. However, I think we made a very positive step again, showing good progress and getting closer to our goal and this is to run with the guys for the points. If we look back on these last four races in overseas during the last month, it has been pretty demanding for everybody. For sure, for the riders even more but as said we made progress and therefore, we’re not so unhappy with.”
#MalaysianGP Moto2™ – Race Classification after 18 Laps:
1 Luca MARINI / ITA / SKY Racing Team VR46 / KALEX / +38´25.689
2 Miguel OLIVEIRA / POR / Red Bull KTM Ajo / KTM / +1.194
3 Francesco BAGNAIA / ITA / SKY Racing Team VR46 / KALEX / +3.020
18 #16 Joe ROBERTS / USA / NTS RW Racing GP / NTS / +29.791
21 #4 Steven ODENDAAL / RSA / NTS RW Racing GP / NTS / +38.430
Moto2™ World Standing:
1 Francesco BAGNAIA / ITA / KALEX / 304
2 Miguel OLIVEIRA / POR / KTM / 272
3 Brad BINDER / RSA / KTM / 201
27 #16 Joe ROBERTS / USA / NTS / 5
31 #4 Steven ODENDAAL / RSA / NTS / 1