October 1, 2019
Moto3 World Junior Championship
After showing impressive pace at Jerez earlier this year in the Red Bull Rookies Max arrived high in confidence and keen to take his first top ten finish. Early signs were positive having quickly settled in and Max demonstrated he was more than capable of challenging the leaders going into qualifying.
As has been the pattern this season although Max would have two sessions to set a time it would only be the first that counted with the tracks slowing in the second. But on a track with 40 riders on Max struggled to get a clear lap in which had a huge effect on his time and put him down in 20th place.
Although he would finish fifteenth in the second session, times would be slower leaving Max 20th on the grid for both races. It was frustrating for Max who was only 0.8 seconds off pole position and just 0.3 off a top ten finish!
In a hectic first lap Max got off to a tricky start in race one and was pushed down to 25th place. It left him with a lot of work to do in the sixteen lap race and a lot of riders to overtake if he wanted to finish in the points!
Fighting amongst riders out of the points is often more difficult than fighting riders in them with everyone desperate to move forward as quickly as possible. Despite some mistakes and after a lot of hard work Max would eventually work his way through the order and went on to finish in sixteenth place.
It was a disappointing result with Max finishing just four tenths behind a points finish and similar progress from his original grid position would have seen him challenge for the top ten.
Race two presented a chance for redemption, but unfortunately hopes of a points finish were short lived. Max once again found himself pushed off the circuit on the opening lap this time finishing the opening lap in 23rd place.
A mistake halfway through the race saw Max once again having to come back from outside of the top 20 and he eventually found himself in a four-way fight for seventeenth. Max did end his weekend on a positive note after a good last lap saw him make two places to lead the fight home. It may have been out of the points but he made the best of a bad situation and showed impressive race craft.
Unfortunately, it was no points for Max which was a huge shame as he showed top ten pace throughout the weekend. A bad qualifying was just the start of a weekend to forget and mistakes in the races did not help his case either.
In racing, you will have these weekends and it’s about how you deal with them and bounce back. Thankfully for Max he does not have to wait long for the penultimate round of the season which will be at Albacete next weekend.