For the 17th consecutive year, Motul was a partner of the French Grand Prix. Motorcycling enthusiasts are not afraid of rain and proved it once more by flocking along (81,000 spectators in all) to attend the race on the Le Mans circuit. Motul enjoyed massive visibility everywhere on the circuit and proposed a free event, Motul Racing, to the public. In all, more than 1,000 people took part in the races of radio-controlled lorries (painted with the colours of the MotoGP teams) in this event. Of interest also was the participation of John Bradshaw's Motul Dragster in the motorsport show on Saturday evening in front of 30,000 enthusiastic spectators.
Also Motul welcomed over the weekend 500 guests in the Motul Welcome area on the edge of the track, at the exit from the pits. Last, Claude Michy, promoter of the Grand Prix and a member of the big “Motul family” for 17 years, was awarded by Mr Amelot, Managing Director of Motul, the 'Motul Powersports COE' (Centre of excellence) award for his contribution to Motul's performance in the motorcycling field. The ceremony took place in front of more than 200 guests at the traditional Saturday evening gala.
Of course the race remained the main focus of the weekend with, for Motul, specific interest in the French team Tech3 supported by the brand for some 23 years! The weekend began well for Andrea Dovizioso who posted 3rd time in the qualifyings and therefore started from the first line next to Casey Stoner. Cal Crutchlow, 5th time, was just behind. On a damp circuit, the two Tech3 riders kept up with the factory riders and for a long time Dovizioso closely trailed Valentino Rossi very much at ease under the rain, exchanging 3rd and 4th place, with Crutchlow ready to pounce. Unfortunately, a fall by the latter during the 19th lap made him fall behind, followed three laps from the end by his team-mate, who also fell. They both managed to start again, clinching 7th and 8th places in the overall standings.
'On such a wet circuit, it was easy to make a mistake but I'm pleased with having kept up such a good pace', Dovizioso acknowledged at the arrival (…). 'In the last twelve laps my front tyre slipped a lot but Valentino couldn't manage to get away from me and I clearly understood we were catching up with Casey [Stoner]. I knew I was touch and go with my tyres but I wanted to follow Valentino.' As for Crutchlow, he couldn't hide a certain disappointment: 'I'm disappointed I fell whereas I was fighting for the podium. Our consolation is that we're again in contention for the top-3'. That indeed is the memory to be kept of this fiercely fought event. For Tech3, the podium is only a wheel spin away but we'll have to wait for the Catalunya Grand Prix, on 3 June, to find out!
01// Jorge Lorenzo - Yamaha - 90 pts
02// Casey Stoner - Honda - 82 pts
03// Dani Pedrosa - Honda - 65 pts
04// Cal Crutchlow - Yamaha Tech3 - 45 pts - Motul
05// Andrea Dovizioso - Yamaha Tech3 - 44 pts - Motul
Image : © Stan Perec