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Bezzecchi Triumphs, Bagnaia Crashes at MotoGP



Le Mans MotoGP race 2023

Marco Bezzecchi seized victory in MotoGP’s 1000th premier-class race at the French Grand Prix. The collision-packed event saw frontrunner Pecco Bagnaia crash out, leaving the field wide open. Bezzecchi’s triumph not only marks his second win but also tightens the championship race, adding an extra layer of suspense to an already electrifying season.

Marco Bezzecchi emerged as the winner of the French Grand Prix at Le Mans in MotoGP, as championship front-runner Pecco Bagnaia was taken out in a crash involving Maverick Vinales.

This victory marks the second for Bezzecchi and his VR46 Ducati team in MotoGP, and it occurred during what the league recognizes as its 1000th premier-class race.

Bagnaia started well enough from the pole position, but was soon relegated to fifth after navigating the Dunlop chicane. Despite recovering a few spots over the next couple of laps, his position within the crowded field would ultimately lead to his downfall.

After a significant collision between Vinales and Luca Marini, Vinales was able to overtake Marini by employing a wide, sweeping route through the Dunlop chicane.

Vinales then immediately set his sights on Bagnaia for the third position, aggressively attempting an inside pass at Garage Bleu. However, as he widened his line through the second part of the S-curve, Bagnaia tried to maintain his position on the outer edge. The two collided in a severe impact that resulted in both of them crashing out.

In the aftermath of the crash, Vinales felt the need to confront Bagnaia in the gravel, a situation that almost turned into a physical altercation between the two. However, upon their return to the paddock, they shook hands.


Their crash was quickly succeeded by an even more terrifying multi-bike accident. Marini lost control exiting the Dunlop chicane on the subsequent lap. As he attempted to prevent the fall using his elbow, he was struck from the rear by Alex Marquez.

Both Marini and Marquez ended up on the track, with Marquez needing to quickly move off the racing line to avoid the approaching MotoGP grid in a heart-stopping sequence.

These two incidents drastically reduced the size of the leading pack, leaving only four bikes in contention, with Jack Miller’s KTM leading the group.

Marc Marquez initially led the race, but Miller managed to get inside him at the Museum corner on the second lap. Although Marquez resisted this move, he could not prevent Miller from overtaking him at the Dunlop chicane on the next lap.

However, Miller’s pace didn’t sustain, even though some jostling behind him allowed the Australian a few more laps in the lead.

Bezzecchi, who narrowly missed the Marini/Marquez accident, was third in the leading group after these incidents. He advanced to second by overtaking Marquez on the eighth lap, an action that effectively sent the Honda racer to the long-lap loop.

The stewards disapproved of this and ordered Bezzecchi to relinquish his position. However, by the time he complied, he was letting not Marquez but Jorge Martin through. Martin’s race had made an amazing comeback after an early mistake at Garage Vert dropped him to tenth place.


Martin’s error at La Chapelle gave Bezzecchi the position back, and only a lap later, on the 11th of 27 laps, Bezzecchi overtook Miller at the high-speed first corner.

From then on, Miller began to fall behind significantly, and by the time Marquez overtook him for second place on the same lap at Chemin aux Boeufs, Bezzecchi was already half a second ahead. Marquez could not match Bezzecchi’s speed.

As Bezzecchi’s VR46 bike pulled away, Marquez was left to fend off Martin, a battle that ultimately ended his race.

Martin attempted to pass Marquez on the inside of Garage Bleu on lap 21 but was unable to maintain a tight enough line to avoid a cut-back. Similar incidents happened on lap 22 at Garage Vert and lap 24 at Turn 1.

However, when Martin overtook Marquez at the Museum corner on the second-to-last lap, Marquez crashed while trying to keep up, ending his first Grand Prix race after a three-round hiatus with a tumble through the gravel.

With Marquez out, Martin was able to secure second place, finishing 4.3 seconds behind Bezzecchi. His Pramac teammate Johann Zarco finished closely in third. The local favorite had looked set to join the Marquez/Martin battle but never quite managed to close the gap.

In a remarkable performance, Tech3 Gas Gas rookie Augusto Fernandez claimed fourth place, just six seconds behind the leader, after a late duel with Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro.


Fernandez’s fourth-place finish was the best result for Tech3 since Miguel Oliveira’s victory in the 2020 season finale.

Both Espargaro and KTM’s Brad Binder were affected on the first lap when Alex Marquez attempted to squeeze into a narrow opening left by Zarco on the inside of La Chapelle, causing a chain reaction that sent all involved, except for Marquez, wide off the track.

Binder eventually recovered to a distant sixth place. He was behind his struggling teammate Miller when a missed opportunity at Chemin aux Boeufs led him to cut the corner and receive a long-lap penalty. Nevertheless, he managed to overtake Fabio Quartararo after serving the penalty and gained another position when Miller crashed with just three laps to go.

Quartararo finished seventh as the leading Yamaha, followed by Gresini Ducati’s Fabio Di Giannantonio, LCR Honda’s Takaaki Nakagami, and Yamaha’s Franco Morbidelli.

All three substitute riders due to injuries managed to finish the race and score points thanks to high attrition. Danilo Petrucci, on his MotoGP return with Ducati, secured 11th place, followed by RNF Aprilia’s Lorenzo Savadori and Tech3 Gas Gas rider Jonas Folger.

Remarkably, the only Honda rider to finish was Nakagami in ninth place. Both Marc Marquez’s teammate Joan Mir and Nakagami’s teammate Alex Rins crashed around the midpoint of the race.

With Bezzecchi’s victory, he is now only one point behind Bagnaia. Meanwhile, Binder and Martin trail Bagnaia by 13 and 14 points, respectively.


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