Maverick Vinales took a shock win in the 125cc French Grand Prix after coming out on top in a straight fight with Nicolas Terol.

The championship leader looked set for another routine victory when he led away from pole position but try as he might, he couldn't shake off the attentions of the 16-year-old rookie. An intriguing battle ensued as both riders seemed content to follow the other, with Terol letting Vinales through on lap twelve.

Vinales wouldn't be outdone and decided to give way for Terol a lap later, as the mind games continued but the younger Spaniard was in front again on lap 16.

With four laps to go, Terol attempted to make a decisive break at the front as he retook the lead but Vinales wouldn't be denied, and stuck on the tail of the Aspar Aprilia as they entered the final lap.

With the 16-year-old making moves to try and distract the leader, Terol decided to take a defensive line into the final right-hander, but that proved to be a costly error as Vinales sweeped through as they moved on the start/finish straight and took his maiden grand prix victory by just 0.048s.

With the leading duo in a class of their own, the chasing pack were immediately cut adrift, with Hector Faubel leading a five man group which included Efren Vazquez, Sandro Cortese, Jonas Folger and Johann Zarco.

Vazquez seemed unable to challenge the second Aspar rider but an attack from behind from Cortese seemed to spark him into life. On lap 19, Vazquez ended Faubel's spirited defence, getting his nose in front at turn one.

Behind them, home favourite Zarco had a third consecutive podium in his sights and made his way past Folger for fifth, which soon became fourth as Faubel slipped further back down the order.

Vazquez had a comfortable advantage and held on for third but Faubel dug deep to force his way back ahead of Zarco to snatch fourth while Folger claimed sixth behind the Frenchman. Sandro Cortese had to settle for seventh, losing further ground to the runaway championship leader Terol, while Sergio Gadea will have also been disappointed to finish eighth.

The experienced Spaniard finished 15 seconds off the lead which of course was held by his teammate on the Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing machine.

Miguel Oliveira was another rookie to impress as he finished a comfortable ninth, with Luis Salom completing the top ten.

As in Portugal, Danny Kent's race went downhill at the very start as he fell down the order, and after initially fighting his way up to 15th, he missed out on the final point by 0.820s to wildcard rider Alexis Masbou. Taylor Mackenzie had a lonely ride to 22nd but nevertheless had a successful return from injury.

Danny Webb also featured in the battle for a points finish but the reliability problems with the updated Mahindra machine continued, and the Briton was forced to retire. Harry Stafford had similar problems on his Aprilia and didn't see the chequered flag either.

Race Result: 26 Laps

Pos Rider Team Time/Gap Points
1 Maverick Vinales Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing 42:00.505 25
2 Nicolas Terol Bankia Aspar Team +0.048 20
3 Efren Vazquez Avant-AirAsia-Ajo +6.836 16
4 Hector Faubel Bankia Aspar Team +8.298 13
5 Johann Zarco Avant-AirAsia-Ajo +8.590 11
6 Jonas Folger Red Bull Ajo MotorSport +10.236 10
7 Sandro Cortese Intact-Racing Team Germany +10.667 9
8 Sergio Gadea Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing +15.642 8
9 Miguel Oliveira Andalucía Banca Civica +22.838 7
10 Luis Salom RW Racing GP +30.901 6
11 Alberto Moncayo Andalucía Banca Civica +33.796 5
12 Simone Grotzkyj Phonica Racing +34.413 4
13 Louis Rossi Matteoni Racing +34.696 3
14 Adrian Martin Bankia Aspar Team +41.236 2
15 Alexis Masbou WTR-Ten10 Racing +56.943 1
16 Hiroki Ono Caretta Technology +57.409
17 Danny Kent Red Bull Ajo MotorSport +57.763
18 Jasper Iwema Ongetta-Abbink-Metaal +57.823
19 Zulfahmi Khairuddin AirAsia-Sic-Ajo +57.884
20 Luigi Morciano Team Italia FMI +1:02.089
21 Jakub Kornfeil Ongetta-Centro-Seta +1:02.713
22 Taylor Mackenzie Phonica Racing +1:25.418
23 Giulian Pedone Phonica Racing +1:42.498
24 Francesco Mauriello WTR-Ten10 Racing +1:43.885
25 Peter Sebestyen Caretta Technology +1:44.903
26 Alessandro Tonucci Team Italia FMI +1:45.356
27 Kevin Szalai Maxiscoot MVT Racing +1 Lap
28 Kevin Thobois Team RMS +1 Lap
Joan Perello Matteoni Racing +4 Laps
Danny Webb Mahindra Racing +7 Laps
Marcel Schrotter Mahindra Racing +7 Laps
Harry Stafford Ongetta-Centro-Seta +11 Laps
Niklas Ajo TT Motion Events Racing +21 Laps

 

Riders Championship (After Round 4: France)

Pos Rider Team Wins Points
1 Nico Terol Bankia Aspar Team 3 95
2 Sandro Cortese Intact-Racing Team Germany 59
3 Johann Zarco Avant-AirAsia-Ajo 53
4 Jonas Folger Red Bull Ajo MotorSport 52
5 Efren Vazquez Avant-AirAsia-Ajo 46
6 Maverick Viñales Pev-Blusens-SMX-Paris-Hilton 1 45
7 Sergio Gadea Pev-Blusens-SMX-Paris-Hilton 28
8 Hector Faubel Bankia Aspar Team 23
9 Miguel Oliveira Andalucía Banca Civica 22
10 Luis Salom RW Racing GP 22
11 Danny Kent Red Bull Ajo MotorSport 17
12 Alberto Moncayo Andalucía Banca Civica 14
13 Adrian Martin Bankia Aspar Team 13
14 Jakub Kornfeil Ongetta-Centro-Seta 12
15 Simone Grotzkyj Phonica Racing 12
16 Taylor Mackenzie Phonica Racing 11
17 Zulfahmi Khairuddin AirAsia-Sic-Ajo 11
18 Hiroki Ono Caretta Technology 8
19 Louis Rossi Matteoni Racing 6
20 Jasper Iwema Ongetta-Abbink-Metaal 4
21 Marcel Schrotter Mahindra Racing 3
22 Niklas Ajo TT Motion Events Racing 2
23 Alexis Masbou WTR-Ten10 Racing 1
24 Josep Rodriguez Wild Wolf-Racc-MS Caretta 1