Tech 3 Yamaha's Cal Crutchlow lost an average of just 0.154s per lap to Factory Yamaha's double world champion Jorge Lorenzo, during Sunday's Austin MotoGP.

Crutchlow crossed the line three-seconds behind Lorenzo and a podium place, despite suffering an early off-track excursion and missing out on the private pre-season test at the new Circuit of the Americas.

The Englishman was locked in an early fight with Stefan Bradl when he ran off track on lap four, dropping him to sixth as Alvaro Bautista swept through. The 27-year-old soon regrouped and recovered the lost places, passing Bautista on lap five and then on Bradl on lap nine, of 21.

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"I'm very pleased and we did a better job than any of us expected before we arrived in Texas," said Crutchlow. "With no testing here I was worried that it would be more of a struggle and the fire in the garage on Wednesday meant we couldn't do any of our normal preparation work.

"So to finish fourth and be behind Marquez, Pedrosa and Lorenzo is a great achievement for all of us and I want to say a massive thanks to my crew. We qualified well and I rode very well in the race and the most pleasing aspect was my consistency.

"Unfortunately I ran wide while trying to pass Bradl but I managed to fight my way back through and I was running the same speed as Lorenzo for a long time and that gives me a lot of confidence to take into the next few races.

"I'm giving it my all and I'll never give up and I think this weekend again we showed how competitive the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 package is. Now we go to Jerez and I was quickest at the winter test a few weeks ago, so it is going to be another big battle that I'm excited about."

Lorenzo publicly congratulated Crutchlow on his performance after the race.