15 May 2022 – Le Mans – France
The race of Moto3 is once again one of the most exciting, giving incredible emotions in every moment. Today we collected a great team result, as Ayumu crossed the finish line in second place, while John, after an absence of five races, ranked twelfth.
What made the race unpredictable was the weather, because a few minutes before the start a few drops of rain began to fall. The race was declared dry and started regularly. Ayumu snapped from the eleventh box, after one of his colleagues was demoted, while John started from the seventeenth position.
Unfortunately, the rain almost immediately increased its intensity and when the drivers arrived at turn 14 of the first lap, they found the track very wet. Those who were in the lead slipped and between them was our Ayumu. Because of this the red flag was displayed. Ayumu pushed the bike to the nearby pit lane, to get back into the pits. Unfortunately in the crash his Husqvarna suffered considerable damage. For this reason, the team of Ayumu and John actively collaborated to rebuild the bike. The work done was egregious, as in the few minutes available before the restart the bike was rebuilt flawlessly. The race started from scratch, so with exactly the same starting grid, but the laps to be completed were reduced to fourteen. Ayumu got off to a good start from the eleventh position, while remaining rather cautious, due to the track conditions. Actually, the track dried very well and during the race there was no more rain. Ayumu started a great comeback and lap after lap he filled the gap with the leading group. With five laps to go he was fourth. Continuing his incredible progression, he arrived on the penultimate lap in second place. The epilogue was just a few corners from the end, when Ayumu from the second position, suddenly changing the trajectory, made a great overtaking. Unfortunately, the different trajectory resulted in a lower exit speed from the next corner, so he was again overtaken, crossing the finish line in second position. It was a great fight that brought Ayumu to the podium for the third time this year. Our driver is now fifth in the championship.
As for John, in the return game after the injury, he managed to earn points. In addition he crossed the finish line just over 3 seconds from the winner. Our driver started from the seventeenth position and after a few laps he had already recovered to the twelfth position. From that moment on, John had a great pace, which allowed him to fill the gap with those who preceded him. Just consider that on the penultimate lap he made a good 1’42.735. The balance for John is very positive, since he returned in points, without making any mistakes throughout the weekend.
We leave you to the words of Ayumu, John and our Team Owner Max Biaggi.
AYUMU SASAKI : “Today in the first race we crashed and the bike was really damaged. The team did a fantastic job. They had only10 minutes to fix the bike . I was thinking that i could not race because the bike was really damaged. Then though we could do the restart and i felt good on the bike. Even though on Friday we struggled a bit, day by day we improved and today I finally felt good on it. In the last lap, when i was second and Masia was first, in the last sector I was thinking where to try, because i just wanted to win. I was thinking to pass him in the second last corner on the braking, but Masia was going too fast at that point. So I thought “i need to pass here” and i passed him. I went wide in the third last corner and he passed me with a great braking. In the last corner I tried a little bit, but since I crashed there I was not sure about it. At the end I finished second and I am a little bit disappointed, but I got the third podium of the season and this is great. I am doing my best in every race. We are fifth in the championship. I just can’t wait to race in Mugello, which is our home Grand Prix.”
JOHN MCPHEE : Today was a really successful day. Of course, as a rider not always you can be happy with P12, but I think today we cam be happy, because we were less than three seconds from the victory, inside this one group, with a really nice rhythm. The bike was working really well. Honestly speaking the biggest think that held me back was my physical condition. I felt good for the first 9 or 10 laps, but in the last five laps I struggled a lot to have the correct movements on the bike. For this reason I think that to come away with points on the boards after such a long time away from the bike was a good day So a big thank you to the team. I look forward to the next two races in Mugello and Barcelona.”
MAX BIAGGI – TEAM OWNER : “A great race for Ayumu who almost got his first victory. I really enjoyed the race and especially in the last laps, when he did not lose heart and tried to reach the top step of the podium. The first victory will come, it is important to continue to work well. I am also happy for the return of John after his stop. He has collected some points and this gives moral in view of the Mugello.”
Results SHARK Grand Prix de France 2022 – Race
1. Jaume MASIA (KTM) 24’04.119, 2. Ayumu SASAKI (Husqvarna) + 0.150, 3. Izan GUEVARA (GASGAS) + 0.220,
12. John MCPHEE (Husqvarna) + 3.193.
World Championship Classification Moto3 2022 – After Race 7
1. Sergio GARCIA (GASGAS) 112 pts; 2. Jaume MASIA (KTM) 95 pts; 3. Dennis FOGGIA (Honda) 95 pts;
5. Ayumu SASAKI (Husqvarna) 75 pts, 16. John MCPHEE (Husqvarna) 15 pts.