Le Mans is an important track on the MotoGP calendar and team Petronas riders Franco Morbidelli and Valentino Rossi are called upon to step up and score some significant results.
After the Jerez race, where Morbidelli finished on the third step of the podium, the French GP will serve to verify his speed. Meanwhile Rossi has different objectives, having struggled to express himself so far this season. The nine-time champion has won at Le Mans on three previous occasions though, so it’s clearly a circuit that can work in his favour.
“I want to be stronger”
"Undoubtedly this weekend I want to be stronger, recover positions and be faster compared to the last round in Jerez - comments Rossi, ahead of the weekend - Last year I was strong in the dry conditions in Le Mans, I was fast and had a good race pace, but it started to rain just before the race and I crashed on the first corner. It’s a great track, with a lot of changes in direction due to the chicanes and I like it a lot. With good grip and strong acceleration, it is a really nice track to ride. We hope that we can have good weather from FP1 until the end of the race. We had a good test last week in Jerez, where we were able to improve different aspects and I hope that we see this also at Le Mans."
“A track where you have to brake hard”
Franco Morbidelli also talks about his expectations for the weekend: “Le Mans is a circuit that I like; it is where I won a Moto2 race, so I have good results from there. In the Monday test in Jerez we focused on the braking and this is a circuit where you have to be really strong on the brakes. Also the opening corners are quite tricky and it’s important to get the first corner right, to make the following ones easier. It’s difficult but really nice. I hope we can confirm the positive feedback and feeling from the test and it can be useful for the weekend. It also felt wonderful to be back on the podium in Jerez, and I hope we can continue that in our next race this weekend."
Translated by Heather Watson