INTRODUCTION: Anton Mang of West Germany and Italian Mario Luchinelli won the 250cc and 500cc events in the motorcycling grand prix which ended its three-day meeting at the Paul Ricard circuit near Le Castellet on Sunday (17 May).
GV Paul Ricard race-track grandstand with spectators.
LV PAN Start of 250cc race.
LV PAN Riders down straight and round bend.
LV & GV PAN AS Leader, No. 1 (Anton Mang), rounds bend and passes crowd. (2 SHOTS)
SV PAN Other riders in pursuit.
SV Pit officials watch PAN TO Mang rounding bend ahead of No.4 (Tony Espie).
SV PAN No. 1 receiving chequered flag.
SV & CU Crowd watch and applaud as Mang receives laurels. (3 SHOTS)
LV PAN Start of 500cc race.
LV PAN No.1 (Kenny Roberts) leading from No.5 (Luchinelli) and others.
CU & SV PAN Man watching as Roberts leads form Luchinelli and others round bend.
LV & CU PAN Crowd watches No.5 now leading from No.2 (Mamola) and No.8 (Crosby).
LV PAN Luchinelli receives chequered flag.
LV & CU Crowd watches Luchinelli squirt champagne. (2 SHOTS)
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: INTRODUCTION: Anton Mang of West Germany and Italian Mario Luchinelli won the 250cc and 500cc events in the motorcycling grand prix which ended its three-day meeting at the Paul Ricard circuit near Le Castellet on Sunday (17 May).
SYNOPSIS: As the crowds gathered to watch the start of the 250cc event, Mang was favourite to win on his Kawasaki after consistently putting up the best times in practice over the 5.8 kilometre (3.8 mile) circuit.
Mang's machine, No.1 was in the lead almost from the start of the 18-lap race. The West German World Champion is reckoned to be an exceptional mechanic, and racegoers say his machines are always kept at a peak of power and efficiency. And that, coupled with his racing experience, makes him a hard man to beat.
But he was given a run for his money by Frenchman Tony Espie, whose Yamaha, No.4 was eventually to come in second.
Mang finished in 39 minutes, 57.8 seconds, just three seconds ahead of Espie at an average speed of 157 kph (95 mph).
The 500cc event was to lead, to some dramatic struggles, with the second place disputed as fiercely as the first.
Reigning champion Kenny Roberts of the USA, riding No.1 took the lead early on with Italian Mario Luchinelli's Suzuki, No.5, hard on is heels. But Roberts' Yamaha was hit by tyre trouble.
Roberts had lost the lead to Luchinelli by the 15th lap as Randy Mamola, No.2, and Graeme Crosby, No.8, fought for second place. Luchinelli was the winner. But is was Mamola who moved to the top of the World Championship standings by beating Crosby to second place.