After a short rest from the grueling early season schedule, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP now heads to France for the Monster Energy Grand Prix de France at the historic Le Mans circuit this Sunday.
Both Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo will be keen to put last year’s difficult race behind them and return to more familiar winning ways at the classic French track.
Traditionally the French GP delivers good results for both with Rossi claiming three premier class victories and one 125cc GP win and Lorenzo claiming three premier class wins and one 250cc GP victory.
Rossi will be looking to make best use of the new chassis for the hard braking areas whilst Lorenzo will be focused on a set up that allows him to keep as much corner speed as possible on the tight chicanes and hairpins between the short straights.
Monster Yamaha Tech3 riders Bradley Smith and Pol Espargaro are aiming to fly high this weekend at the team's hugely anticipated home race for round 5 of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship.
After a successful and confidence affirming post Jerez test, Smith and Espargaro will build on their positive results so far this season and put their newly acquired knowledge from the test to use in the 28-lap sprint at the 4185 metre Le Mans circuit, one of the most historically significant motorsport tracks.
Bradley Smith's notable start to the season has seen him flirt with the accolade of the leading satellite bike in the opening races, and he will be looking to break the top five in Le Mans. Whereas rookie Pol Espargaro will continue his rocket start to his MotoGP career and intends to collect his fourth top ten finish, as he consistently battles against established riders in the top half of the field.
After a well-deserved seventh place at Jerez, Aleix Espargaro aims at repeating a strong performance on the tight French track that is characterized by first gear corners, late braking and hard acceleration. Team mate Colin Edwards is looking forward to getting a good result at Le Mans, a track where he has visited the podium in 2005 and 2008.
Bob Ulrich was named Modern Tire Dealer editor in August 2000. He joined the magazine in 1985 as assistant editor, and has been responsible for gathering statistical information for MTD's "Facts Issue" since 1993.