Francesco ’Pecco’ Bagnaia converted his maiden pole to victory in the Moto2 French Grand Prix at Le Mans, the first time a rider has won from the first slot on the grid at the Bugatti circuit in the class.

The Sky Racing VR46 rider blasted way at the start of the race with only Alex Marquez able to stay with him at the front. The Spaniard kept the pressure on until the very end despite electrical issues over the last five laps hampering his ability to give chase.

Bagnaia responded, with his near-perfect lapping giving him enough advantage to lead from pole to the very end of the race.

The win sees him remain championship leader, with 98 points, a whole race wins advantage over second place Miguel Oliveira.

Marquez led EG 0,0 Marc VDS to a double podium finish with rookie Joan Mir appearing on the rostrum for the first time after another best race result, which also led to an all-Kalex top three.

Marcel Schrotter (Dynavolt Intact GP) held onto fourth after being passed in the closing stages by Mir.

Next to see the chequered flag was his team-mate Xavi Vierge. The Spaniard had qualified second but a fuel pump issue saw him have to start the warm-up lap from pit lane and the race from the back of the grid. Vierge tore through the opposition in an impressive ride which saw him rise to fifth.

Miguel Oilveira made himself as hard to pass as possible but had to give best leaving the Red Bull KTM Ajo man in sixth.

Romano Fenati became only the second rookie to score points this season when he finally lived up to his qualifying promise by crossing the line seventh on the second Marinelli Snipers entry.



Fabio Quartararo was the best of the home riders in eighth for Speed Up, with Brad Binder (Bed Bull KTM Ajo) and Stefano Manzi (Forward Racing) who had started way down the grid in 23rd completing the top ten.

Pons HP40 rider Hector Barbera finished eleventh, just ahead of Andrea Locatelli who he passed in the closing moments, leaving him twelfth for Italtrans.

Sam Lowes had his hand up early in the race after running wide to try to avoid a penalty, but he struggled to recover from the places lost in his error, finishing 13th for Swiss Innovative Investors. Fellow Brit Danny Kent was down in 21st for Speed Up.

The remaining points went to Tasca’s Simone Corsi in 14th and Khairul Idham Pawi (Idemitsu Team Honda) in 15th- his first points finish of the season.

Niki Tuuli, who replaces Zulfahmi Khairrudin at SIC Racing Team after he moved to a coaching role, finished 22nd in his first world championship appearance.

All the wild-card entries finished the race - Corentin Perolari (Promoto Sport Transfiormers) had the best result in 24th, Xavi Cardelus (Team Stylobike) took 26th while extra entry Cedric Tangre (Yohan Moto Sport) crossed the line 27th.

Luca Marini, who has a dislocated shoulder, did the lap required to remove his six place grid penalty so as not to carry it forward to his home round in Italy before retiring to the pits.

Isaac Vinales did not see the end of lap one, hitting the gravel at turn fourteen. He was quickly followed out of the race by Eric Granado and Iker Lecuona on the next lap. Jorge Navarro slid out at turn eight with 21 laps remaining.

Mattia Pasini finished out of the points for the first time, with five laps run the Italian made a great save but rode his luck too far falling moments later, though he rejoined for 18th.

With eighteen laps to go Lorenzo Baldassarri, fell at turn three, parking his bike in the middle of the track at turn four after setting the then fastest lap as he chased the leaders. All the riders after him avoided the bike but the Italian is yet to record a points finish in Le Mans.

Federico Fuligni was next to exit, while Tetsuta Nagashima brought up the 100th crash of the weekend across all classes with twelve laps still to go.

Joe Roberts held on until there were six laps left to run and was the last crasher- falling from a points finish, he remounted for 19th.

Hector Garzo, again replacing Remy Gardener, saw his hopes dashed when he was handed a ride through penalty for a jump start, before he later crashed out. Fellow replacement rider Lukas Tulovic, in for Dominique Aegerter at Kiefer, fared better in 23rd.

Bo Bendsneyder also saw his chance of points fade when he was handed a time penalty for taking a shortcut during the race.


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