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Steven Odendaal Pulls off an Incredible Save in Brno

Published 08/04/2019, 7:02 AM EDT

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This weekend, MotoGP came back from their summer break with a race in Brno, Czech Republic. The opening two days were extremely soggy and RW Racing GP rider Steven Odendaal found out the hard way. However, he refused to go down without a fight and as the bike touched a damp patch.

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Naturally, the two-wheeled monster pitched the South African in the air, but then he defied the laws of physics. Steven Odendaal made an incredible save during Moto2 free practice  and lived to tell the tale.


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Odendaal was flung from his seat as his bike wobbled after coming out of turn 13 at the Automotodrom Brno. He somehow recovered and kept the machine upright as he slid along the tarmac beside it, eventually bringing it to a full stop.

Odendaal would later finish 28th in that session, meanwhile, teammate Bo Bendsneyder finished in 17th. In qualifying, Odendaal took 28th place on the grid, while Bendsneyder sneaked into Q2 and finished 8th fastest.

That save of Steven Odendaal brought back memories of the heart-stopping save of Niklas Ajo in Moto3, Assen a few years ago. The only difference was that Ajo’s incredible save came during the race itself. Although he dropped down the order, he can take pride in the fact that he is now in the echelons of history of producing the greatest save ever.

The Finn was flicked into a high-side just moments from the chequered flag, Ajo coming off the bike but clinging onto the handlebars – throttle still open – not only caught the out-of-control bike beneath him but kept it out of the barriers despite coming remarkably close to them but then hauled the bike over the line. The man even crossed the finish line on his knees.

Finnish rider Ajo finished the race in 17th place, ahead of two other riders who finished the race in a more conventional style.

Its shows the commitment of Ajo, who pulled off the remarkable improvised finish despite still being just 20-years-old. A day after that incredible race, Ajo wrote on Instagram, “What a race yesterday. The front group got away already in the start so the race was just fighting in the second group. I was able to lead the group until the last corner but pushed a bit too much there and finished like this. Was a scary moment but I wanted to finish the race in any way and I think that was a pretty unique way!!”


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Many even began to compared the South African to racing legend Randy Mamola, who pulled off a similar stunt.


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Written by:

Dhruv George


One take at a time

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.
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