MotorcycleDaily.com – Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Andrea Dovizioso moves into the lead of the MotoGP championship standings after finishing fifth in the Dutch TT at Assen. Jorge Lorenzo finishes in fifteenth place after changing bikes in a flag-to-flag race

Andrea Dovizioso produced another great performance today in the Dutch TT race at Assen to move to the top of the MotoGP championship standings. The Ducati Team’s Italian rider, who started from row 3 after qualifying ninth on Saturday, finished today’s eight round in fifth place as the half-way point of the season approaches. The last time a Ducati rider led the world championship table was the 2009 Italian Grand Prix with Casey Stoner.

After finishing the opening lap in seventh place, Dovizioso began a thrilling come-back which took him up to second on lap 21, when light rain began to fall on the Dutch circuit. After a terrific scrap with Rossi and Petrucci, who eventually finished first and second, the Italian rider was caught first by Marquez and then by Crutchlow and he finished his race in fifth without wishing to jeopardize his championship lead, especially in view of the tricky track surface conditions.

It was a difficult race for Jorge Lorenzo after the Spanish rider started from the seventh row. After moving up the field into twelfth by lap 18, Lorenzo then lost a couple of places in the next few laps when it started to rain and he opted to return to the pits for a bike change on lap 21, finishing the race in 15th place.

Thanks to Danilo Petrucci (Pramac Racing Team) finishing runner-up in today’s race, Ducati has now moved up to second place in the Constructors’ standings, one point ahead of Honda.

The next round of the championship is the German Grand Prix on Sunday at the Sachsenring circuit.

Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 3rd
“Today’s race was a very difficult one and having to start from row 3 complicated things a bit. At the start I wasn’t able to be very smooth and I lost touch with the leading group, but I remained focussed to see where I could recover and when Viñales crashed in front of me, I pushed hard to get back up with the leading group. At that moment I was the quickest on the track and this is a good sign for our bike. When I came up on the leaders it started to rain but you couldn’t really see where the track was dry and where it wasn’t. For this reason I didn’t want to take any risks and I tried to finish the race in the best possible way to score some valuable points for the championship. We go back home in the lead of the table and it’s a new emotion for me because I’ve never been in the lead of MotoGP. I want to thank all my team because this weekend we again worked really well and despite the constantly changeable weather conditions, we made the right decisions, we stayed calm and in this end it all paid off.”

Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team #99) – 15th
“Today I experienced a race like the ones in 2014 or 2016: unfortunately with these changeable weather conditions I’m just not able to be fast. When it began to rain I thought that the situation was going to get worse and I decided to return to the pits to change my bike and go back out again on rain tyres. The rain actually didn’t increase and I had to settle for fifteenth place. Unfortunately we are still missing half a second a lap to be able to stay with the leading group, so now we have to turn the page as soon as possible and look ahead.”