Enea Bastianini, Gresini Racing’s MotoGP rider, won the French GP this Sunday after a dispute with Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team), who got flustered when he was overtaken, ended up crashing and retired.
The Gresini Italian, who had a perfect race, started from the second row, took second place in the first corner, behind Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team), with Bagnaia (who started from pole position) taking third.
It didn’t take long and the Ducati Italian took second place behind his teammate. After a few laps, Bagnaia took the lead, but couldn’t open up much. Miller started to lose performance and Bastianini took advantage of the moment to be in second place.
Bagnaia led most of the race but Bastianini continued to close the gap and when he pulled over he started to provoke. He was not reckless, he waited for the right moment to try to overtake. And so it happened, he passed the Ducati rider but, two corners ahead, he was passed back. After the race he described this overtaking as ‘to make him (Bagnaia) nervous’.
And that’s exactly what happened, a few more corners ahead, the Ducati rider made a mistake delaying the braking and went off the track, allowing Bastianini to pass. With this mistake, the Gresini rider managed to open up a certain advantage. Bagnaia, in a hurry to try to reduce it, ended up losing the front tire traction, crashed and had to retire.
With that, Bastianini managed to ride calmly to the finish line, marking his third victory of the season, and entering the title dispute once and for all.
Ducati had to settle for Miller’s second place. For the Australian, it was a good position, as he was pressured by Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing) and championship leader Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) for practically the entire race.
Espargaro, with third place, has achieved his third consecutive podium of the season, and is fully in contention for the title, with a disadvantage of just 4 points to Quartararo.
Anyway, the race was very hectic and there were several crashes, for example, from the Suzuki duo (Joan Mir and Alex Rins), and from Bagnaia himself. Quartararo remains the championship leader, with 102 points, and Aleix Espargaro is second, with 98 points. Next stop: Italian GP at Mugello.
See the Championship standings after the race in Le Mans:
MotoGP returns on May 29, with the GP of Italy, at the Mugello circuit.