A second successive fifth place finish was labeled a 'solid performance' by Bradley Smith as he cemented his place inside the top six in the MotoGP championship standings.

After a consistent weekend in which he qualified eighth, Smith took advantage of the early spate of crashes to sit behind Dani Pedrosa in fourth.

The Englishman decided to choose a conservative front end setting, giving him plenty of feel and warning but not, perhaps, outright speed which prevented him from challenging Andrea Iannone when the Italian came by on lap 18.

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Although he finished 27 seconds back of race winner Jorge Lorenzo, Smith was content to equal his best finish of the year while ensuring another decent points haul.

"At the end of the day you've got to keep racking up points," he said. "There's not a lot to write home about but in terms of the points that we have and our consistency it's been a very solid performance.

"We keep setting the bike up so that I'll know what's underneath me. In races it's really easy to get sucked into other bikes and other riders and what they are doing. It's been really important to have the discipline to brake at my markers and do what I know I need to do. In the race we went ultra conservative with the front end and that hampered us a bit in terms of outright performance but it gave us a lot of feeling in the front and I'd know when it was about to tuck.

"If I had the chance to do the race again I probably wouldn't be that conservative again but we got a fifth position and we're 21 points ahead of Cal in the championship so our satellite battle is a bit stronger. We're one point behind Marc and he's had all sorts of problems but at the end of the day in racing you have to finish the race."

Having sat behind Iannone for one lap, Smith had the chance to compare where the Ducati GP15 has advantages over his 'Satellite' M1. He believes maintaining edge grip is one key area to improve.

"There wasn't anything I could do about Iannone. The Ducati keeps its edge grip better than us. I couldn't hold tight lines or go in early and touch the throttle, like Valentino could, and that's something that we need to improve on. I don't know what we need to do to improve on it but I suffer for grip in that area. I need to open the throttle a bit later than them at the moment and pick the bike up."