A cracked wheel rim dragged Bradley Smith out of a top six place at his home British MotoGP.

The Monster Yamaha Tech 3 rider had made a great start from the third row to reach fifth, ahead of Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa.

Smith later passed Aleix Espargaro then exchanged some hard passes with Andrea Iannone, before the loss of rear air become too much to contain and he was forced to pit for a new rear tyre.

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"I was jumping out of my seat [at the start] to be able to follow like I did and make some passes," enthused Smith.

"Everything seemed to be going so good and I did my best lap on my first flying lap, everything was that perfect. But then I felt the rear drop and I thought that maybe it was just the extra temperature and it got worse to the point that I was having big moments and nearly crashing at every corner.

"We had a cracked rim. Normally on track we run 1.8 bar [of pressure] but when I came back to the pits it was at 0.6 bar, so we had lost a lot of air. I don't know when it happened, if it was at the beginning or after a few laps, but unfortunately it cracked and that was it.

"I stopped and changed to a tyre from yesterday and had no major issues and could go back into the 2m 03s as well. So a little bit frustrating but also a clarification that we would have been sixth today."

When asked how rare it is to have something like that happen, Smith said:

"I don't know. Same as how rare is it to have two bad tyres in a year and all the other tings that have happened. Unfortunately all the rarities and one-in-a-millions seem to be happening to me this season. It's not that I expect it now, but I've learnt to deal with it. I just have to keep on plugging through and at some point it will change. Our pace will shine through and we'll be battling for fifth and sixth and I'll forget all these bad things happened."

Smith added: "I did absolutely nothing differently and it just happened. We'll look into the history of the wheel to see if there was a big crash to justify it but from a mileage perspective there was nothing. We make sure we run with the newest stuff in the race to avoid this kind of thing. I wish it would just happen in practice or warm-up, not the race!

"This weekend I nailed the beginning of the race. That was the biggest thing. I was there and battling in the first five laps and that was the first time that ever been able to do that. So thanks to the team for that and for managing the pressure of the home GP."

Having made his pitstop, Smith came out in last place - but to a huge cheer from the home crowd.

"The crowd was amazing and even coming out of the pitlane when I rejoined the race I could hear a massive cheer and on the cool down lap it was the coolest thing that I've ever witnessed. Especially being so disappointed, to have that continued support was very special."