Schrötter keeps calm as he finishes sixth on the opening day at Le Mans
LIQUI MOLY Intact GP rider Marcel Schrötter finished the first day in sunny conditions in a promising sixth place despite two slips, while teammate Jeremy Alcoba aims to make a significant step forward on qualifying day.
The French Grand Prix is one of the most unpredictable race weekends every year, and the 4.2km Bugatti Grand Prix Circuit is also living up to its reputation in 2022, because contrary to what is often said, sunny conditions prevailed on Friday for the first free practice sessions of the SHARK Grand Prix de France - whether this will last the entire weekend remains to be seen.
However, it was a turbulent first day for the LIQUI MOLY Intact GP team's German rider Marcel Schrötter. His pace was competitive from the start and that ultimately helped him achieve P5 in FP1 thanks to his 1'36.710, so even a slip towards the end of the session did not detract from the top result. In the second free practice, the 29-year-old even took over second place in the top speed ranking with 268.7km/h, but when testing his limits, the experienced Moto2 rider paid a second visit to the gravel at Le Mans. The two small mistakes will not unsettle him, because the feeling and the performance of his Kalex make the current world championship sixth extremely positive for the qualifying Saturday.
Jeremy Alcoba, meanwhile, continues to fine-tune his Moto2 bike, on which he has delivered many respectable performances since the start of his rookie season. His 28th place in FP1 and the slight rise to P27 in the day's combined standings mean nothing to the young Spaniard. However, the ambitious 20-year-old is certainly striving for more, so he will now put in a lot of work with his crew to be stronger and ready for battle in qualifying on Saturday afternoon. It promises to be a close battle for the best grid positions at Le Mans, in which Marcel Schrötter and Jeremy Alcoba will be keen to get involved on tomorrow's Saturday.
1. Somkiat CHANTRA / THA / KALEX - 1'36.108
2. Augusto FERNANDEZ / SPA / KALEX - 1'36.263 (+0.155)
3. Stefano MANZI / ITA / KALEX - 1'36.608 (+0.500)
5. Marcel SCHROTTER / GER / KALEX - 1'36.710 (+0.602)
28. Jeremy ALCOBA / SPA / KALEX - 1'38.357 (+2.249)
1. Pedro ACOSTA / SPA / KALEX - 1'36.166
2. Somkiat CHANTRA / THA / KALEX - 1'36.328 (+0.162)
3. Augusto FERNANDEZ / SPA / KALEX - 1'36.394 (+0.228)
6. Marcel SCHROTTER / GER / KALEX - 1'36.589 (+0.423)
25. Jeremy ALCOBA / SPA / KALEX - 1'37.483 (+1.317)