Bendsneyder and Odendaal just miss points

Bo Bendsneyder and Steven Odendaal were close to the points in the Grand Prix of Spain, but the riders of NTS RW Racing GP just couldn’t get to it. Of course they were not happy with sixteenth and eighteenth respectively, but given the course of the race that was shortened to fifteen laps, they may be satisfied.

Both riders rode a strong race, which was restarted and shortened after a major crash in the second corner. Bendsneyder was able to just avoid the crash, with five riders and their machines scrambling across the track. Remy Gardner and Dimas Ekky Pratama had to miss the restart, Alex Marquez started from pit lane.

On the narrow track of the Circuito de Jerez Angel Nieto, the shortened race was also hectic. In the chaos of the start, Bendsneyder lost a few places, but he soon made up for it. Odendaal, too, could come forward a little within a few laps. For the South African, the race in Jerez was the first of the season, after two operations at his foot. As a result, he lacked competitive rhythm.

Only when Bendsneyder passed Stefano Manzi and Somkiat Chantra did he have a free track. The gap to the group in front of him – with Dominique Aegerter, Andrea Locatelli and Marcel Schrötter among others – had already risen to more than 3 seconds. He could take almost a second off in the final laps, but the race was too short to really get into the fight for the points.

NTS RW Racing GP team manager Jarno Janssen was not dissatisfied with the weekend. “The result – sixteenth place for Bo – may be a bit disappointing, but we also saw very good things this weekend. We know what needs to be improved. The eighteenth place for Steven, who has not been on the bike for months, is definitely not bad. Tuesday and Wednesday we will test in Aragon. Not only do we have a lot of new components to test for the NTS, we can also work on Bo’s starts and Steven can make miles to get back into the rhythm.”

Bo Bendsneyder (16 at +18,335): “My start was not good at all, so I lost a lot of places. That was crucial for the final result. My pace was good, but the shortened race made it difficult to ride to the points. It is certainly important to start working on the starts and that is one of the points on the schedule for the test in Aragon.”

Steven Odendaal (18 at +22.591): “We could not have expected much more for a first race after a long injury with two surgeries. During the race I also noticed that my physical condition is not yet 100 percent, which is also not so strange. But it felt good to be back racing again and I am happy with the bike, the package and the work of the team. That’s okay. Now I have to get completely fit again and make miles.”