Danilo Petrucci clinches surprise victory at Le Mans

Danilo Petrucci produced a classic performance in the rain at the Shark Helmets French Grand Prix to take his second career victory in the premier class and become the seventh different winner of the season.
Danilo Petrucci won the French MotoGP from Alex Marquez and Pol Espagaro.Danilo Petrucci won the French MotoGP from Alex Marquez and Pol Espagaro.
Danilo Petrucci won the French MotoGP from Alex Marquez and Pol Espagaro.

After a five-minute delay at the start due to the rain at Le Mans Petrucci, the 2019 Mugello winner, was in total control from the lights on the factory Ducati.

The Italian who next season will swap factories and race for KTM was part of a Ducati 1-2-3 of Jack Miller and Andrea Dovizioso in the early stages of the race that saw a possible pre-race favourite Valentino Rossi crash the Monster Energy Yamaha at Turn 2 on the opening lap.

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Alex Rins on the Ecstar Suzuki was making inroads on the front three coming through from 16th on the grid and by lap 13 had caught Miller.

The pair swapped places until a few laps later the Suzuki rider made a massive move on the leaders, lunging down the inside at Turn 10 causing all kinds of problems just as Dovizioso took the lead for the first time in the race.

Petrucci came out best, back in front as the four sorted out track position with Dovizioso shuffled back to third. Unfortunately for Miller his Ducati cried enough a lap later leaving Petrucci a couple of seconds in the lead with Rins second and Dovizioso third, but Rins slid out at Turn 3.

Alex Marquez was having the best performance of his Repsol Honda career, powering through from 18th on the grid to earn his first MotoGP podium in second.

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On the penultimate lap ‘Dovi’ lost out to a hard charging Pol Espargaro on the KTM for third and as Miguel Olivera challenged the Ducati rider for fourth he was outdone by Johann Zarco for fifth.

Championship leader and pole setter Fabio Quartararo finished ninth on the Petronas Yamaha but still held on to his championship lead by ten points from Joan Mir.

British star Sam Lowes took the win in the Moto2 class after fellow Brit Jake Dixon threw away a golden opportunity for his maiden Grand Prix win, crashing out with five laps to go.

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