From third position on the grid, Johann Zarco led the first three laps, but then he couldn’t withstand the pull of Fabio Quartararo and Álex Rins. When Joan Mir and Pecco Bagnaia arrived, the Frenchman lost the front end of his Ducati at turn 10 and his race ended there.
“I had a bit of a problem with the gearbox, so I wasn’t in the right gear. When I dropped two gears [in the corner] I stayed in first because I hadn’t engaged fourth properly before. I hadn’t engaged properly. I thought I had I made a mistake, but they reassured me by telling me that they had had this little problem with other drivers before. Bad luck”, explains Zarco .
The Cannes driver believes that the problem could have been due to the very fast race pace he was trying to follow.
“I was missing a few tenths and maybe I was pushing too hard to follow the others. Maybe the changes weren’t as correct as they should have been. I think that was one of the causes,” he said.
The condition of the Ducati’s front tire did not help to avoid the fall either.
“The front tire wasn’t very good on the right side, it couldn’t support me and that’s why I crashed immediately. We hadn’t had that problem, but maybe doing a lot of laps in 1:38.9 isn’t easy. I think it got too hot going behind Mir. We probably needed a different set-up.”
Zarco left the World Championship lead in the crash, which now passes into the hands of his compatriot Quartararo after winning the race.
“I was hoping to fight for the podium. The lead on the straight is still important and I knew I could make the difference going up the straight. Rins and Fabio ran away. I was hoping to stay behind Pecco but I made the mistake almost immediately after it happened to me,” he stressed.