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Redding had only qualified 10th, while Espargaro started from the front row.
A brilliant first lap brought Redding up to fourth, only for a horrific five-bike midfield crash to cause a red flag. All involved escaped serious injury.
At the restart, Espargaro took the lead while Redding had to avoid a collision between Xavier Simeon and Alex de Angelis and fell to 12th.
Espargaro was ultimately defeated by Pons team-mate Tito Rabat (pictured), but overcame Tom Luthi to secure second after a long battle.
Redding could only get up to sixth and then lost another place to Johann Zarco when he ran wide at the final corner.
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