#FrenchGP - May 12, 2024

It was a special Sunday in Le Mans on the grid of the Bugatti Circuit as French motorcycle fans were loud and excited for the main race of the Michelin® Grand Prix de France. The event broke its own attendance record of 2023, registering 297,471 passionate people who joined the party this weekend in France. Red Bull GASGAS Tech3 was prepared for a flag-to-flag race as grey clouds threatened the circuit, but in the end, it was a dry, but windy race that awaited the grid. Pedro Acosta could not deliver what he wanted so badly, a great result for his team's Grand Prix, after the rookie made a mistake early in the race, and crashed. Augusto Fernandez managed to bring a few points to his garage after a tough race, finishing in 13th.

As he lined up in twentieth on the grid, Augusto Fernandez was hoping to bring his team a good result after he had seen his feeling on the bike improve over the weekend. Opting with the soft tyre at both front and back of his bike, the Spaniard did not take the best start and found himself at the back of the grid after the first lap. Things were not going to be easy from there, but he started to set up with his race pace, riding his fastest lap on lap 5 in 1'32.011, one that allowed him to gain ground and overtake Alex Rins and Luca Marini, and sit behind Takaaki Nakagami, behind whom he was on the starting grid. The race was challenging, Augusto struggled to settle into a competitive race pace, a bit far from the group ahead to benefit from them. With the few crashes having occurred at the front, Augusto Fernandez finished in thirteenth, and scored three points, a small reward for his team at home.

Sometimes, we tend to forget that Pedro Acosta is just a MotoGP™ rookie. After his impressive debuts in the premier class, with two podiums, a front row start and a silver sprint medal, the Shark crashed after making a mistake. It happens, it is part of the game, and part of the learning process. The Red Bull GASGAS Tech3 had a different Sunday plan in mind though, after the rookie topped the warm up session in the morning. When the lights went out this afternoon, he made a rocket and gained one position in the first lap, placing himself just behind Maverick Vinales. Pedro's early pace was strong, and soon in lap two he attacked Vinales and overtook him, however as he tried to make a move on both Fabio Di Giannantonio and Aleix Espargaro in the third sector, he crashed. It is a great shame for Acosta and his team, after a promising start, but we will learn and come back stronger at the next round in Barcelona, on May 24-26.

Position: 17th
Championship: 17th
Points: 13
"We had a bad start today, which put us in a bad position for the race, and we paid the price. I expected to start better to be with the faster group, but it did not happen. I could not ride like I wanted, it was a tough and frustrating race, but we have to look at the positive, it is the best I've felt since the start of the season. I am looking forward to the next round in Barcelona, it is a track that I enjoy, and hopefully our confidence will continue growing."

Position: 6th
Championship: 4th
Points: 73
"The weekend was not bad overall. After the sprint, we made a big step on the bike’s setting, and the feeling was really good in the warm up this morning. Today could have been a good day: we made a good start, the bike worked well, but there were a few guys doing strange things on the track, and we ended up crashing, one more year. It feels like it is becoming a tradition for me in Le Mans. Let’s try again at the next round in Barcelona.

Team Manager
"We are leaving the French Grand Prix with a huge bitter taste this year. Pedro Acosta was feeling really good this morning, he was fastest in the warm up. In the race, the feeling was also good, and he was fighting for the front, but he made an early mistake and crashed. Right now, there is some frustration, because there was potential to do well today. Sometimes we forget that he is a rookie, and it is only his first mistake this season, and I am sure that it will help him bounce back even better, and make him a stronger rider. On Augusto Fernandez’ side, we scored three points, a small reward, especially for the mechanics who had a tough weekend, but it is not the position we are targeting. The positive is that Augusto’s feeling on the bike is a little bit better, but we need to start our weekends better and start the races higher on the grid. We know where we need to work, and we will try to be efficient from Friday in Barcelona. Let’s pack, and head to Spain in two weeks. Thank you Le Mans!


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