Filip Salac (Rivacold Snipers Team Honda NSF250RW) achieved his first Moto3 podium at Le Mans today, taking the chequered flag in second place at the end of a very tricky race on a drying track.
Earlier rain had soaked the Le Mans circuit, so the entire grid started the race with rain tyres, but lap by lap the asphalt dried, requiring riders to tread carefully in their efforts to prevent their tyres from overheating.
Salac led the first lap, then battled for victory, briefly retaking the lead with ten laps to go before deciding it better to secure a safe second place, rather than risk crashing. The 19-year-old Czech rider, who cooled his rain tyres on the drying track by running through puddles on the straights, was delighted with his first podium, bettering his previous best of a fifth place at the 2019 Valencia GP.
John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing Honda NSF250RW), winner of the soaking 2019 Moto3 race at Le Mans, rode a very strong final few laps to cross the finish line less than two seconds off a podium finish.
Andrea Migno (Rivacold Snipers Team Honda NSF250RW) started from pole position, after a superb ride in yesterday’s Q2 qualifying session, but found the going more complicated in today’s race. The 25-year-old Italian finished 11th to stand third in the World Championship points.
Today was a great day for Andi Farid Izdihar (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW), who scored his first World Championship points with a strong ride to 15th place. The 23-year-old Indonesian started from last on the grid, due to a penalty for a rules infraction in practice, and made excellent progress through the pack, snatching 15th on the final lap. Izdihar also started the day well with first place in this morning’s soaking warm-up session.
Team-mate Yuki Kunii (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) was unable to race after fracturing his left collarbone in a fall during qualifying.
Takuma Matsuyama (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) had to deal with the trickiest of conditions on his Grand Prix debut. The 16-year-old from Chiba made a superb start and within a few laps was battling for World Championship points. Sadly, he slid off on the fourth lap. After this race Matsuyama returns to his usual Moto3 Junior World Championship duties.