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Crutchlow caught up in first turn drama, battles to fifth

30 June 2012

Cal Crutchlow's remarkable powers of recovery were once more put to the test as the British rider charged through the field to capture fifth place in the Dutch TT at Assen after running off track at the first corner.

The 26-year-old Yamaha Tech 3 star was forced to take evasive action as a result of the incident involving Jorge Lorenzo and Alvaro Bautista and crossed the line in 12th position after the opening lap.

Still carrying an ankle injury following his accident at Silverstone, Crutchlow was forced to dig deep once more but rapidly clawed back positions to catch Ducati riders Valentino Rossi, Hector Barbera and Nicky Hayden.

Crutchlow, heavily rumoured to have a factory Ducati offer for 2013, moved past the Desmosedicis and into fifth place on lap 16.

He then held station to secure his sixth top-five finish of the season, although for Crutchlow, it was yet again a case of what might have been.

“Once again I am contemplating what might have been because without the incident at the first corner I had the pace to be on the podium today,” he said.

“I was actually quite lucky to avoid being collected by Alvaro and Jorge but I still had to run off track and I was last.

“I'm glad Jorge was not hurt because the job he has done for Yamaha this season has been incredible and he didn't deserve that today,” he added.

“Alvaro was way too fast and I know he didn't do that intentionally but you have to be sensible when braking from high-speed for a tight first corner like that.”

On his valiant effort to make up ground, Crutchlow said he had no option but to 'put my head down' and rattle off the fast laps.

“Like in Silverstone I was right at the back but just decided to get my head down and recover as many places as possible,” he said.

“I had a really good battle with the Ducatis but I had a faster pace, although I had one big moment when I lost the front on lap eight and had to do all the hard work again.

“To be at the back and still come through to fifth is a fantastic result. But there is no doubt I should have been in the battle with Andrea [Dovizioso] and Ben [Spies],” added Crutchlow.

“With my ankle still causing me a lot of pain and coming from last to fifth, I can't be too disappointed and I leave here still fourth in the world championship and that is very important.”


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