There are days when you fight for the victory and then there are days when you generate points in the Constructors’ Championship and represent CFMOTO in third place. With this performance we will head to Mugello for the next race and there we aim for the podium again.
French Grand Prix headline: Xavi Artigas shoots to 7th in the final sprint of the 1,000th Grand Prix in history and Joel Kelso happily fights his way back into the points with P11. We leave Le Mans with good feelings and again great teamwork!
The weekend at the Bugatti Circuit had started very well for the CFMOTO Racing PruestelGP team. Both factory riders visibly enjoyed their work, whether in dry or wet track conditions. Up to qualifying, both were consistently in the Top10 and Xavi Artigas even in the Top3. Artigas and Kelso followed their strategy of riding in a duo and pushing each other, but it is difficult to always get the best lap in the tightly timed qualifying of Q2. In the end, they were 8th and 16th on the grid.
On Sunday the race day clouds were largely absent as the sunshine shone down on MotoGP™. Artigas was smart and consistent inside the leading group while Kelso had to recover from a ‘scare moment’ on the first lap that dropped him to the fringes of the top twenty. The Australian then put his head down and concentrated on the trawl through to a creditable 11th.
Artigas pushed and tried again and again to find his gaps. On the last lap he had a short wobble, had to go a bit far and took away his chance for a top result. The conclusion of the weekend is nevertheless positive and with places 7 and 11 important points were scored for the World Championship.
CFMOTO rank 3rd in the Constructors championship as the PruestelGP squad hold 6th position from 14 in the Teams listing.
MotoGP™ takes a small break for three weeks to then commence on a fierce triple-header in mid-June. Grand Prix in Italy (Mugello), Germany (Sachsenring) and the Netherlands (TT Circuit Assen) will provide three very different back-to-back dates.
#43 Xavier Artigas I P07
“Happy with the rhythm we showed during the race and the whole weekend in fact. It was a shame not to be fighting for podium positions at the end but we know what we are missing to make that happen and I hope we can find the solution with our settings in the coming races. We’ve got three weeks now until Italy, so we’ll train, prepare and hope to be stronger in Mugello.”
#66 Joel Kelso I P11
“The race wasn’t’ easy, that’s for sure. My leg is about 80% and I started to struggle from the middle to the end of the race but I was very happy with the pace even if qualifying effected our potential today. When I arrived to P11 the rest of the guys ahead were too far but I was doing the same lap-times as them for the majority. We need to come back 100% in Mugello and I’m looking forward to showing what we can really do when we get there.”
Results Moto3™ SHARK Grand Prix de France
1. Daniel Holgado (ESP) KTM 34:07.176
2. Ayumu Sasaki (JPN) Husqvarna +0.150
3. Jaume Masia (ESP), Honda +0.946
4. Ivan Ortola (ESP), KTM +1.113
5. Deniz Öncü (TUR) KTM +2.521
7. Xavier Artigas (ESP), CFMOTO Racing PruestelGP +3.280
11. Joel Kelso (AUS), CFMOTO Racing PruestelGP +14.438
Moto3™ 2023 world championship standings after 5 of 20 rounds
1. Daniel Holgado (ESP) KTM, 84 points
2. Ivan Ortola, (ESP) KTM, 63
3. Jaume Masia (ESP) Honda, 63
5. Xavier Artigas (ESP) CFMOTO Racing PruestelGP, 50
18. Joel Kelso (AUS), CFMOTO Racing PruestelGP, 12
Pictures by © RLekl