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MXGP, MXGP OF TURKEY - Afyonkarahisar, Turkey, 3 Syyskuu 2023

Romain Febvre pulls back 25 points in Turkey

Romain Febvre of Kawasaki Racing Team MXGP heads confidently to the final two rounds of the FIM World MXGP Motocross Championship after pulling back twenty-five points at Afyonkarahisar in Turkey.

The Frenchman emerged third in each moto from the hectic first two turns at the man-made track on the thousand-meter high plateau of central Anatolia to give himself a solid base for success. In the first moto he tracked the early leaders before moving gracefully into second on the second lap and five laps later he had pulled back the three-second deficit to the leader to sweep around him for a clearcut victory. The surface was significantly faster for race two after work by the track crew and it was perceptibly more difficult for all competitors to make time over their rivals; the Kawasaki leader could match the pace of the two riders ahead of him but the opportunity to make a telling pass did not arise and he had to be content with third in moto and second overall on the day. He did however gain significantly over the championship leader, who had a troubled day, and has reduced the deficit at the head of the series standings from ninety-two to sixty-seven points with a possible one-hundred-and-twenty points still available from the two remaining GPs.
Romain Febvre: "I never had a really good feeling for this track in all the years we have been coming here; I think this is only the second time I have been on the podium. I didn't feel comfortable yesterday but I have always ridden better in racing than Timed Practice and I managed to turn it around today. There was a lot of drama at the first two turns both motos but I could come out of there third each time. In the first moto I saw that I was faster and had good lines to take the win, but in the second race I was third all moto; I could keep the distance to Maxime but I couldn't find anywhere to make the difference so in the end I had to settle for third. I have gained many points in the championship this weekend and it's never over until the end but my only solution is to win what I can and hope Jorge makes mistakes. Anyway, I'm looking forward to the last two rounds. I love Maggiora - I have good memories from there - and I think everyone enjoys England; it is such a great track, so let's keep it going."
Teammate Mitch Evans raced to a solid twelfth place in race one, significantly denying his teammate's championship rival a point through the closing laps of the moto, and was looking for a top placing in moto two as he raced in the wheel tracks of his Kawasaki colleague through turn two. However the Australian was soon losing positions and it became clear only at the completion of the thirty-five minute moto that he had ridden in great pain in his wrist to salvage points for a brave seventeenth. He remains twelfth in the series standings.