Pedro Acosta and Marc Marquez predicted for Le Mans glory

Round five of the 2024 MotoGP season heads to Le Mans with a lot to live up to.

Marc Marquez, MotoGP, Tissot sprint race, Spanish MotoGP, 27 April
Marc Marquez, MotoGP, Tissot sprint race, Spanish MotoGP, 27 April

COTA and Jerez were two of the best race weekends MotoGP has delivered in the last few years, but can Le Mans deliver something similar. We discussed Le Mans on the Crash MotoGP podcast.

Maverick Vinales won in the United States before Francesco Bagnaia rebounded with a brilliant victory over Marc Marquez at Jerez.

Contenders at Le Mans

Francesco Bagnaia

The Jerez grand prix winner has to be a favourite for this weekend despite never having won at Le Mans in MotoGP.

Ducati’s imperious record at Le Mans in recent seasons, plus the red-hot start to 2024 means they should have plenty of contenders, but with Bagnaia back at the front of MotoGP, the two-time reigning world champion should be in the mix.

Marc Marquez

Getting stronger and stronger with every round, Marc Marquez and the GP23 Ducati are beginning to look like an ominous combination.

Marquez was the strongest rider during Sunday’s Spanish grand prix, but after failing to make his overtake for the lead stick at turn nine [back-to-back] laps, the Gresini rider saw his front tyre temperature rise, while Bagnaia put in the fastest lap of the race in order to hold off the eight-time world champion.

Jorge Martin

Jorge Martin, MotoGP race, Spanish MotoGP, 28 April
Jorge Martin, MotoGP race, Spanish MotoGP, 28 April

Martin could have won the Spanish MotoGP as he led going into the second half of the race.

However, a surprising error at turn six saw him lose the front and in the process throw away a potential 25 points.

Martin will be hoping to bounce back and show his rivals that his error was just a blip. The Pramac rider won the sprint at Le Mans in 2023 and will believe he can do the same this season as his speed and consistency has been better than anyone.

Enea Bastianini

Third in the championship, Bastianini is yet to win so far in 2024 although that could all change at Le Mans.

During the 2022 season when Bastianini won on four occasions, Le Mans was one of those where he took top spot, out-duelling Bagnaia in the process.

Pedro Acosta


Perhaps an outside bet for victory this weekend, Acosta could deliver a stunning result in front of the Red Bull GASGAS Tech 3 team’s home fans.

Acosta has looked like a potential MotoGP winner more often than not in 2024, and Le Mans could be the venue he achieves a maiden win.

Maverick Vinales

Vinales showed in Jerez that he had the speed during practice, however, a poor qualifying set the COTA winner back.

If Vinales can be towards the front, a return to victory contention should be possible, especially since Le Mans is a circuit he has gone very well at in the past.

But who are we at predicting to take home the spoils in the sprint and grand prix?

Peter Mclaren, Jordan Moreland and myself gave our predictions on this week’s podcast.

Robert Jones

Sprint win: Well I keep tipping him so I think it’s about time [laughs] - It’s Marc Marquez to win the sprint for me.

Grand Prix win: I do want to pick against Ducati, I really do. But I’m finding it too hard based on the performance they are showing and their record at Le Mans, so I think they will make it five in a row and I think Bagnaia is going to do double grand prix win after his victory in Jerez.

Peter Mclaren

Sprint win: I’m going with Acosta to carry the Tech 3 flag.

Grand Prix win: I’m going to go with [Marc] Marquez. I’m slightly hedging it on the weather because we saw he went really well in Jerez and he has a set-up that works. But otherwise, all those heavy braking zones, could we see part 2 of Marquez vs Pecco? It could happen. Le Mans is a place where you can just run it up the inside.

Jordan Moreland

Sprint win: I don’t want to be boring but I think Martin is going to win the sprint. He’s so good when he gets the lead and can’t be stopped really.

Grand Prix win: I’m going to pick Marc Marquez to win the grand prix as well. That first chicane, even last year on the Honda Marquez, was a nuisance to the Ducatis. There was a really good slow motion of Marquez sending it up the inside and Pecco had his arm off mid corner. I do think Marc; weather changeable conditions play into it, but you can see how good he is in those changeable conditions. You can see his advantage especially in Jerez. If it’s in the dry he still has a great chance, but if it’s in those changeable conditions I think he’s the man and can run away with the grand prix, baring a mistake.

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