Randy de Puniet claimed a solid if unspectacular seventh place in his home French MotoGP round at Le Mans on Sunday, keeping him as the top satellite rider in the 2010 world championship.

Started sixth on the grid, de Puniet dropped to eighth on the first lap, which became a lonely seventh when Casey Stoner crashed out.

"It was a special and tough GP for me because I wanted to get a good result especially for my fans. This is my best result on this track in the premier class but I am a bit disappointed.," he confessed.

"I got a bad start and dropped from the second row to the back of the group but after that I set good lap times catching the eight place. After Stoner's crash I was seventh but could not close any further because my front tyre started to slip and almost crashed ten times.

"So I had to slow down, but seventh is not so bad. I am still sixth in the world standing and we are the best private rider at the moment!"

de Puniet is five points in front of next best satellite rider Marco Melandri (Gresini Honda).

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