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GP Week : Issue 11
33 THE shortest grand prix in history had the crowd in ecstasy, with the first home French win in any class since 1979. The victor of a splashy five- lap sprint was Mike di Meglio, after early leader Gabor Talmacsi crashed out on the last corner on the second lap. Englishman Bradley Smith shadowed him safely home after passing Pol Espargaro on the second lap and taking the lead from Nicolas Terol mid- race, before di Meglio passed them both. “It’s a big emotion for me to win at home,” said di Meglio, who had one previous win in 2005. The five-lapper came about after the first race was red- flagged after 15 laps, when rain fell, causing several riders to fall. This was just short of two-thirds distance, invoking the ‘race neutralisation’ rule; whereby the first race counts only for grid positions in the sprint to complete full distance. Di Meglio had been fifth in that race, behind Joan Olive, Terol, Stefan Bradl and Talmacsi. “I got a second chance and I took it,” said second-placed Smith, who had battled his way through to ninth after messing up his start. Espargaro, Andrea Iannone, Olive came next in the re-run, the field spread out in the tricky conditions. Di Meglio also gained the lead on points, with 74 to Terol’s 66. Double-winner Simone Corsi dropped to third on 62, after finishing 13th. 125: Hometown hero wins in France M oto GP FRANCE >>