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Moto3: Rossi takes debut home win at wet Le Mans
20 May 2012 By Lisa Lewis
Frenchman Louis Rossi took his first grand prix victory in his home French Moto3 race, at a very wet Le Mans on Sunday.
Rossi becomes the first French rider to take a home win since Mike Di Meglio in 2008. The 22 year old stormed to the front after many riders crashed out of the lead in a race that only 15 riders finished.
Alberto Moncayo brought home the Bankia Aspar in second while fellow Spaniard Alex Rins finished third on the Estrella Galacia 0,0 Suter Honda.
The top five finishers all recorded personal best results. Many of those who crashed out of podium positions were able to rejoin and circulate to get world championship points in the cold, wet weather.
Italian rider Niccolo Antonelli raced sensibly in the conditions to take fourth on the San Carlo Gresini, benefiting as many ahead of him struggled in the rain.
Arthur Sissis lost positions earlier in an incident with Danny Kent but managing to stay on the bike served him well as he finished fifth for Red Bull KTM.
Title leader Sandro Cortese recovered from his nightmare qualification to run in the top three, after a late crash he rejoined the race to finish in sixth on his Red Bull KTM Ajo. He remains the championship leader.
Jasper Iwema finally got a strong result for the Moto FGR Honda team in seventh while Frenchman Alan Techer performed well at his home race in eighth For the Technomag TSR Honda team.
Ivan Moreno came ninth for the Andalucia JHK Laglisse team with Guilian Pedone rounding out the top ten for the Ambrogio team on their new Suter Chassis
Folger, Schrotter, Hanus, Tonucci and Ajo were the remaining finishers. Niklas Ajo managed to claim 15th despite crashing twice.
Portuguese rider Miguel Oliveira crashed out of the lead on his Estrella Galicia 0,0 sponsored Suter Honda with just eight laps to go, Maverick Vinales then did exactly the same on his Blusens Avintia FTR Honda on the following lap.
Zulfami Khairuddin, who led the early laps on his AirAsia-Sic-Ajo KTM, indicated he would manage the conditions when he tweeted the rain was the same as he was used to in Malaysia before the race start. He crashed out while in third late in the race.
Luis Salom had kept in the leading pack on his RW Racing GP Kalex KTM, when a mechanical issue saw him fall back through the field, the Spaniard recovered to set his fastest lap only to later crash out of the race.
Seasoned campaigner Hector Faubel lost the front of his Bankia Aspar while racing with Oliveira, Jakub Kornfeil was also competitive for most of the race on his Redox-Ongetta-Centro Seta FTR Honda only to crash out seconds after Faubel.
Neither of the British riders finished the race after Danny Kent crashed while racing team mate Arthur Sissis for position on the Red Bull KTM Ajo, Danny Webb who came into the pits on the opening lap along with Jack Miller met him again when the Mahindra and Caretta Technology bikes crashed together later in the race.
Efren Vazquez had a nightmare race for the T-Shirt Laglisse team as he crashed on the warm up lap.
Italian rookie Romano Fenati crashed out early in the race while trying to make up places after qualifying down in 21st, he suffered a damaged exhaust with 22 laps to go and could not rejoin the race.