Vinales Takes Win In France After Bumper Last Lap

Maverick Vinales took advantage of a disastrous last lap for Valentino Rossi to win the French GP. The Spaniard moves to the top of the championship standings with the win, whilst Dani Pedrosa moves up to second after his third place finish. Johann Zarco secured his first MotoGP podium at his home Grand Prix with his second place finish.

Vinales Le Mans

Image: Crash.net

After Zarco’s strong start from the front row, Maverick Vinales soon took over the lead and looked in control of the race. Vinales led the group of Yamahas who broke free, with Johann Zarco and Valentino Rossi following.

Marc Marquez managed to catch up with the leading group, but crashed out with 11 laps remaining. That left the top three well clear of the rest of the field, with Rossi and Zarco trailing Vinales. But with six laps remaining, Rossi slipped underneath Zarco at turn 2 and began to hunt down Vinales.

Rossi recorded consecutive lap records as he chased down his team-mate, and then passed him in a repeat of his pass of Zarco. But it was a disaster of a final lap for the Italian, who first ran wide, allowing Vinales to retake the lead, and then lost the front as he attempted to regain top spot.

This left the door open for Zarco to secure a second place at his home Grand Prix, whilst Dani Pedrosa picked up third after a lonely ride.

Andrea Dovizioso managed to edge out Cal Crutchlow in the latter stages, whilst Jorge Lorenzo finished sixth, ten seconds back. Jonas Folger overcame the challenge of Jack Miller, whilst Loris Baz finished ninth in his home Grand Prix. Andrea Iannone rounded off the top ten.

Among the British riders, Bradley Smith and Sam Lowes both picked up points, finishing thirteenth and fourteenth respectively. Scott Redding was forced to retire early on.

Joan Mir took the win in a shortened Moto3 race, after an oil spill caused half the field to crash out on lap two. Danny Kent secured tenth on his return to Moto3 after his split with Kiefer Racing in Moto2. John McPhee came just behind Kent in twelfth place. Franco Morbidelli continued his run of winning every race that he has finished this season, securing his fourth win of the season in Moto2.

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Lorenzo dominates at Le Mans

Jorge Lorenzo moved top of the championship after a dominant 10 second victory at Le Mans. Valentino Rossi recovered from a poor qualifying session to finish second, whilst Maverick Vinales fuelled the rumours about his possible move to Yamaha with his first MotoGP podium.

lorenzo le mans

Image: Crash.net

Lorenzo had qualified on pole and quickly disappeared, with no rider able to challenge his lead even in the early laps. Andrea Dovizioso, Andrea Iannone and Marc Marquez trailed to world champion, with Iannone showing the greater pace. But Iannone lost the front shortly after passing his team mate, leaving his contract for next season looking even less likely. Marquez was able to rejoin the race, managing to pick up three points for his 13th place.

Valentino Rossi managed to catch Dovi and Marquez, passing them both. He was then given some breathing room, as they both crashed almost in synchronisation with 13 laps to go. By then, Lorenzo was well clear of his team mate, so both Yamahas were able to coast to a one-two.

dovi marquez crash

Marquez (left) and Dovizioso (right) go down simultaniously. Image: Crash.net

Vinales capitalised mostly from the Dovizioso and Marquez crashes, capping of an impressive ride with a podium, 5 seconds clear of Dani Pedrosa. Pol Espargaro finished ahead of his brother in 5th, whilst Danilo Petrucci returned from injury with a 7th place.

Eugene Laverty was the only British finisher, as Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith crashed out and Scott Redding retired early on.

In Moto2, Alex Rins dominated as Sam Lowes finished 6th, whilst in Moto3, Brad Binder made it back-to-back victories after his impressive showing at Jerez.