Heavy rain turned the 2005 Grand Prix of Germany into a battle for survival - which fittingly ended with reigning eight-times world champion Stefan Everts back on the top of an MX1 podium.

The slippery one line surface meant a strong start was crucial and it took Everts just a few corners to hit the front in both motos, which eh would then lead to the chewqrued flag.

However, the Yamaha star's moto two victory wasn't without drama as he few from his machine - after it got lodged solid in a deep, off camber, rut - with three laps to go. Fortunately for the Belgian, he held a 12second lead over his nearest rivals and was just able to remount ahead of Mickael Pichon, who himself fell trying to pass Everts, and Tanel Leok - handing Stefan his 85th GP victory and first since the British GP seven races ago.

Pole sitter Steve Ramon looked like he might have been able to fight Everts in race one; the KTM star catching his countryman and moving to within striking distance before a lapped rider ahead stalled in a rut - causing chaos for those behind.

After a brief moment of panic, Everts extracted his Yamaha from the rut and wheelspun his way past the roadblock, but Ramon lost 20-seconds and any chance of victory as he got stuck in the offline 'slosh' in his own attempt to pass the lapper. Nevertheless, Ramon's 2-4 results gave him second overall - his best result of the season so far.

The final podium position was claimed by second in the championship Josh Coppins. The CAS Honda rider made a bad tyre choice in race one - dropping him to fifth - but his third behind Everts and Kawasaki rider Leok in race two was enough to edge out Pichon overall. However, Everts has now extended his championship advantage to lead to 53-points.

"That's not the first time in my career that I had to wait such a long time to win a GP, hopefully I can continue to win a few more in the following weeks," smiled Stefan. "That would be really nice and I'm happy with this victory today. I've been fighting hard in the last GPs and missed the win in South Africa but that's also part of racing.

"The first race was really tough, the second was much better as it started to dry out and there were some better lines. In the second race it was the kind of conditions that I like, I was feeling really well and rode consistent.

"In the second moto I was a little bit worried when I got stuck three laps from the end. I tried to keep the bike up and running, there were really deep ruts in this part of the track, but finally the engine stopped and I crashed. Then I was lucky to restart with two kicks and I managed to take again the lead from Pichon.

"It took me half a lap to find my rhythm again. I did my fastest lap on the seventeenth circulation and pushed to keep Leok behind me," he explained. "Next event is Isle of Wight, last year was a tough event for me but I've good confidence for this time and I will go there hoping for a top three result."

In the MX2 class, Antonio Cairoli led both races from the first lap to the last to snatch the world championship lead from fellow Yamaha rider Andrew McFarlane. The Australian produced a strong performance in the first race to secure second place but crashed in the second heat.

That dropped him from eighth to fifteenth, and he finally ended the race in thirteenth. Meanwhile, KTM's Carl Nunn (3-4) and the surprising Manuel Monni (4-7) on a 125cc two-stroke KTM joined Cairoli on the podium.

"I'm really happy to win here in the mud, and I proved this season that I can win in all conditions, hard, soft, sand or mud," said the Italian. "I've been training really hard this winter in Belgium, that's the place you have to go if you want to become world champion as all the top riders are there and you can practice with them in all conditions.

"The track was really difficult today but with two good starts it was easier for me as I had good vision and could choose my lines. Today it was important to avoid any mistake and ride with the brain. I got back the red plate today and want to keep it for the rest of the season.

"I'm in really good shape at the moment and my goal is to win the next three races. Last year I didn't qualify in Isle of Wight after many problems during the qualifications with my friend Philippaerts, but I really like this track and I will go there confident," he declared.



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