Alex Rins brought Luis Salom’s three race winning streak to an end after snatching victory on the last lap at the Sachsenring. The Estrella Galicia rider saw off the championship leader by two tenths of a second with Maverick Vinales losing out to his title rival in a photo finish, forcing him to settle for third.
The three Spaniards, who have swept up 20 of the 21 podium positions on offer before Sunday, were the class of the field again with only Jack Miller able to get in amongst them in the early stages. The Australian soon fell back into the clutches of Alex Marquez who was involved in his own battle with the two Mahindras.
At the front, Rins and Vinales took turns in the lead as Salom kept his powder dry but the fight for victory would escalate in the last four laps. Rins remained in front until leaving the door open at the Omega corner, allowing Vinales back through, but Salom sprung to life just a few corners late to dive past both at the Sachsen curve, taking the lead for the first time.
What followed was reminiscent of Assen as the Red Bull KTM Ajo rider pumped in some blistering sector times to increase the distance between himself and his adversaries, pulling out four tenths in the space of a lap. Unfortunately for Luis though, this race would be a very different story as Rins kept himself in contention with just one lap remaining.
Alex wasn’t close enough to make a move at the end of the pit straight but a magnificent run through the ‘waterfall’ corner gave him just the kind of slipstream he was looking for and Salom would relinquish the lead just two corners from home. With the move coming so late, Luis had nothing by way of response and it almost got worse as Vinales drew alongside exiting the final corner. Fortunately for Salom, the finish line came with his KTM just 0.016s ahead of Maverick’s, giving him second place.
Miguel Oliveira matched his and Mahindra’s best result of the year by beating Marquez to fourth while Efren Vazquez followed close behind in sixth. As a result, the brave Jack Miller was demoted to seventh with home favourite Jonas Folger a disappointing eight ahead of Brad Binder and Arthur Sissis.