Felice Monteleone – FMPhotoSport MotoGP News
Team Estrella Galicia 00 Marc VDS Moto2 team, GP of Le Mans race – May 17th 2015
Moto2: First French podium for Rabat
Le Mans, France – 17 May 2015: The French Grand Prix saw Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider Tito Rabat cap a strong weekend by finishing on the podium at Le Mans for the first time in his career. The reigning Moto2 World Champion finished second behind Thomas Luthi.
Rabat, who qualified fourth fastest, was able to get to the front of the field in the early laps and fought with Luthi and Johann Zarco throughout the race but ultimately the Swiss rider was able to open a gap while Rabat was fighting his way past Zarco.
For Rabat the race was another indication of how he has recovered the form of last year that saw him dominate the Moto2 class and with Mugello next on the calendar Rabat will be looking to build his title momentum, having improved to sixth in the championship standings to trail Zarco by just 36 points.
Alex Marquez had a difficult weekend in France with the Spanish rookie crashing out of the race on the fourth lap. Marquez was starting from 21st on the grid and tried to give it everything to make up places in the early laps but he was struggling for grip from the start and crashed on the fourth lap of the race.
Tito Rabat: 2nd
“I’m happy because we have improved the bike and I’m feeling much happier with it. It was a good race here in Le Mans, but I know that we need to improve even more at the next race in Mugello if we are to start challenging once again for race wins. We’ve worked hard to get back on the podium, and for that I want to say a big thank you to the team.”
“In Moto2 it’s so difficult to come through the field and I had some problems in the first corners of the race with other riders and dropped to 25th. From the start I had some problems with the rear and I didn’t have much grip so I tried everything that I could. The crash was a bit strange because Louis Rossi crashed in front of me as well. I think that we need to make a reset before Mugello so that we can go there with 100% motivation and make some improvements. We need to get some good results for me, for the team and for my confidence.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“It was a fantastic race by Tito! I think that we’ve found the pace that we were looking for from the start of the race and he spent almost all the race in the 37’s. Maybe he was stuck behind Zarco for too long and if he had been able to get past earlier he may have been able to close the gap to Luthi. This was a good race for the championship because we finished in front of Zarco, Rins and Folger both crashed and didn’t score points so that’s good for Tito. For Alex it was a bit of bad luck because I was confident after the warmup that he was faster than the rest of the weekend and he was confident in the bike. To crash out of the race is a disappointment because he could have learned a lot with another finish but I hope that when we go to Mugello he’ll be at the same level as he was in this morning’s warm up.”