By Bruce Allen
Round 5 of the 2016 MotoGP championship brings those daring young men on their wingleted machines to the French countryside for the Monster Energy Grand Prix de France. The Loire river valley is wine country and, as most folks know, you need rain and mild temperatures to grow a decent sauvignon blanc. What’s good for the grapes is, unfortunately, bad for motorcycle racing. Without a clue who might win Sunday’s race, it’s a safe bet that the Rain Gods will play a part in the outcome.
Before we start, let’s address this writer’s predictions concerning Round 4 in Jerez. I suggested that Valentino Rossi might be under-motivated, being handsomely contracted through the end of 2018, and that Jorge Lorenzo could be inclined to hold back in order to punish Yamaha for lovin’ on Vale so much that he jumped ship to Ducati for the next two seasons. Accordingly, the two finished one-two in a Yamaha rout. We’ll just set all that on a side burner to simmer for a while; I’m much better at discussing past events than predicting future ones.
Recent History at Le Mans
Early in 2013, Dani Pedrosa was having the best premier class season of his career. Starting the year with a 4th in Qatar, he chased race winner and rookie Repsol Honda teammate Marc Marquez all over the joint in Austin before settling for second. He followed that up with a decisive win in Jerez. Somehow, in a steady downpour, he outran Cal Crutchlow and Marquez to the flag at Le Mans, extending his lead for the year. He held this lead until a heavy crash in practice at Round …read more
Source:: MotoGP 2016 Le Mans Preview