Red Bull IceOne Husqvarna racing’s Max Nagl, one of just three riders to hold the red plate as MXGP series leader in 2015, admitted that Yamaha’s Romain Febvre is likely to own the championship.
The German was speaking on his return to Grand Prix action at Mantova on Saturday after taking Pole Position and after missing four rounds due to a broken ankle. Febvre would go on to win round 15 of 18 in Italy for his sixth success of the year and extend his lead in the standings from 84 to 101 points over HRC’s Gautier Paulin.
“He has to do it because he is so far ahead now,” Nagl claimed, before then hinting that the rate of injuries in the premier class this year has helped the 23-year-old rookie build a margin of success. “The championship is a bit of a shame, let’s say, because Tony [Cairoli] is missing, me, [Clement] Desalle, [Ryan] Villopoto,” he added. “He [Febvre] deserves it of course but it would have been better if everybody had been there.”
Febvre can afford to lose one point to Paulin at this weekend’s Grand Prix of the Netherlands at Assen and still become the first rookie to win MXGP since Tony Cairoli in 2009. Finishing in front of his team-mate for Team France at the Nations will seal the deal. Nagl was demoted to sixth in the series on Sunday as Shaun Simpson posted superior points and the privateer is now in the top five.