Sasaki celebrates podium success in Le Mans, Veijer scores again
Ayumu Sasaki of the LIQUI MOLY Husqvarna Intact GP team had to wait a long time to climb onto a Grand Prix podium again. At Le Mans, the Japanese rider managed a brilliant second place, while his rookie colleague Collin Veijer scored another World Championship point in his still-young Grand Prix career with P15.
The scenes in the parc fermé showed an overjoyed Ayumu Sasaki after the Japanese rider, who had started the fifth race of the season from pole position, held on to second place almost constantly. By the end of the 20-lap race, the 22-year-old was literally glued to the rear wheel of long-term leader Daniel Holgado, but his own risk control made Sasaki hesitate for a final attack, eventually crossing the finish line safely in second place with a 0.150s gap. Sasaki is one of the absolute top favourites this season and now sits in 6th place in the World Championship with 43 points, despite having failed to score in two of his five races. With the newfound confidence in himself and his Husqvarna, he is now ready to fight for wins and the title again.
One who also regularly exceeds the expectations of the German Moto3 team is youngster Collin Veijer. The Dutch rider, who is only 18 years old, has so far contested his first World Championship season with flying colours, scoring three times in five races. His 15th place in Le Mans is all the more impressive because the weekend was rather mixed for the former Red Bull Rookies Cup rider and less than 24 hours ago Veijer painfully crashed out in Q1 with a highsider. However, this also proves his bite and that if he can get further up the grid in qualifying, he is a sure-fire points contender.
Next stop: Gran Premio d'Italia from the 09th - 11th of June 2023 at the stunning Tuscan circuit of Mugello, where the LIQUI MOLY Husqvarna Intact GP duo will be aiming to take another step forward.
1. Daniel HOLGADO/ SPA/ KTM
2. Ayumu SASAKI/ JAP/ HUSQVARNA – (+0.150)
3. Jaume MASIA/ SPA/ KTM – (+0.946)
15. Collin VEIJER/ NED/ HUSQVARNA – (+16.969)
Moto3 World Championship
1. Daniel HOLGADO / SPA / KTM / 84
2. Ivan ORTOLÁ/ SPA/ KTM/ 63
3. Jaume MASIA/ SPA/ KTM – 63
6. Ayumu SASAKI / JPN / Husqvarna / 43
20. Collin VEIJER / NED / Husqvarna / 8