Repsol Honda rookie Marc Marquez secured his sixth podium of the season at Assen this weekend, holding off tough competition from flying Brit Cal Crutchlow in third and struggling to catch up with race winner Valentino Rossi.
|Marquez was the only Honda on the podium at Assen
Photo: Repsol Honda
The Spaniard had a tough start to the weekend in Holland after a high speed crash in Friday free practice resulting in a broken finger and toe. Despite this set back the 20 year old still qualified in second, 0.357s behind Cal Crutchlow on pole position. Marquez got his usual strong start at an overcast Assen, and was up with team-mate and race leader Dani Pedrosa in the opening laps of the race, before being passed by Valentino Rossi on lap 5 of 26. The reigning Moto2 world champion then spent the closing laps of the race holding off Cal Crutchlow and trying to make up the gap to leader Rossi. Narrowly missing out on a crash with Crutchlow, Marquez crossed the line comfortably in second position, 2.170s behind Rossi.
Marquez revealed “Overall the pace was faster than I had expected. At the start and throughout the race both Dani and Valentino were very strong. In fact, Valentino was simply faster than us today. I could only pass Dani towards the end, because at first I had a lot of trouble. Once I passed Dani, I tried to catch Valentino, but my arm began to affect me and I couldn’t brake in my normal way due to my injured finger. In the end we took 20 points after a good battle with Cal and think I defended pretty well against him. In general, we can say we’ve done a good job all weekend. I have a lot of respect for Jorge today, he showed real strength and he did a great job. I would also like to congratulate Valentino, as it’s always good for motorcycle racing when he’s up at the front!”