Bendsneyder 20th, Biesiekirski 22nd in damp Le Mans
Changing weather conditions again played a leading role in Le Mans, with a slowly drying track at the start of the Moto2 race. The difficult conditions had their effect on Bo Bendsneyder and Piotr Biesiekirski too, especially in the opening stages of the French Grand Prix. Bendsneyder eventually finished in 20th, Biesiekirski in 22nd.
As the sun came out shortly after the MotoGP race, when the Moto2 riders were on the grid, the track in Le Mans was slowly drying, leaving the whole pack with the same question: wet tires or slicks? Everybody choose the slick tire, but there wasn’t too much time to change the settings of the bikes to dry set-up as well. On top of that there was only a thin dry line, making overtaking a big risk at the start of the race.
Bo Bendsneyder had a very promising warmup-session in the morning, finishing in 16th, but that didn’t help much in the damp circumstances. He didn’t have the best of starts, but managed to keep his position at the end of the first lap. The Dutchman needed some time to find confidence and rhythm in the damp conditions, but once he found that, he could close in and pick up the battle with Bulega, Nagashima and Navarro. Overtaking Nagashima cost him a lot of time and effort, and this gave Pons and Dalla Porta the change to overtake the pair of them, costing Bendsneyder more than he eventually gained. It left him finishing in 20th at 1.12.930 from race winner Lowes.
Piotr Biesiekirski was a bit too eager to get the party started and made a jump start, which was punished immediately with a double long lap penalty, leaving the young Pole far behind. He even was lapped by the leaders by the end of the race, but still managed to finish, although at one lap behind.
Bo Bendsneyder: “It was a very difficult race with these conditions. With only a thin dry line I didn’t have enough confidence and grip to overtake, but as the race wore on, I started feeling better and more confident and the pace went up. I tried to overtake Nagashima four times, but each time I tried I almost lost the front and ran wide on the wet track. I had to catch up and start over again. In one of those occasions unfortunately I left the door open for Pons and Dalla Porta to pass through. Only in the end I managed to catch Nagashima. Such a pity. We now put sight on Aragon, hoping for a bit more consistent weather conditions.”
Piotr Biesiekirski: “It was a really hard race. It took me a couple of laps to get a feel for the conditions but I was able to keep the group in front in my sight. Unfortunately the double long lap penalty for a slight jump start meant I’ve lost touch but I was focusing on improving my lap times and avoiding mistakes. In the end I was able to pretty much match my best time from yesterday’s qualifying, which was held in much better conditions, so that’s a positive. Of course I was hoping for more but I really feel that I’ve learned a lot today. Thanks to the team for a great work during the whole weekend. Can’t wait for Aragon now.”