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Simoncelli returns to winning form in France

Simoncelli returns to winning form in France

After his difficult start to the year Marco Simoncelli took a big stride forward with victory at Le Mans.

On a wet track at the Grand Prix de France Marco Simoncelli took his second podium in two races, with his first win of the year, going some way to make up for his pointless visits to Qatar and Japan.

The Italian rider won the 2008 title after failing to finish the first two races of last season and he could repeat that feat as he defends his crown, having taken maximum points at Le Mans from second on the grid at round four.

Simoncelli brought his Metis Gilera machine home 18 seconds ahead of Héctor Faubel (Valencia CF – Honda SAG), who recorded his first 250cc podium with a solid ride.

Also avoiding any errors was Simoncelli’s Metis Gilera colleague Roberto Locatelli who came home third having not been on the rostrum since 2006.

Álvaro Bautista (Mapfre Aspar) picked up good points in fourth place to go top of the general standings, a single point ahead of Hiroshi Aoyama (Scot Racing) who finished eighth.

Ratthapark Wilairot (Thai Honda PTT SAG) scored the best result of his career to date, whilst Raffaele de Rosa (Scot Racing) crossed the line sixth.

Czech rider Lukas Pesek (Auto Kelly - CP) was seventh and Imre Toth (Team Toth) ninth, coming home just ahead of World Championship newcomer Vladimir Leonov (Viessmann Kiefer Racing) who scored a creditable tenth.

Meanwhile, in an unfortunate incident, Alex Debon (Aeropuerto Castello-Blusens) brought down Thomas Luthi (Emmi – Caffe Latte) with ten laps to go, when the Spaniard was running in third and the Swiss rider second, leaving Luthi visibly distraught.


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