At the close of a weekend which saw Bradley Smith place second in FP3 and qualify as second best Yamaha, the Englishman was content to finish sixth in the Indianapolis MotoGP and consolidate his championship placing.

Having expressed his displeasure at Yamaha's handling of his current contract situation on Friday, Smith produced another fine display in Sunday's race as he narrowly missed out on catching Andrea Iannone in fifth at the close of the 27 laps.

Smith admitted to making a mistake with his launch control on the line but then demonstrated impressive consistency. From the third lap onwards all bar two of his times were in the 1m 33s with his fastest lap coming with just four laps remaining.

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"I have to be happy with the result today as it was another step forward," said Smith. "My most important objective was to start the second half of the season strong and keep the same level of performance from the beginning of the year, which I have been able to do.

"However, I made a mistake at the start and I actually began the race with no launch control in first gear as I had changed to second just before the lights went out. Yet despite that, it was better than I expected and I won't be making that mistake again in Brno. After the warm up this morning, I was a bit worried that we could struggle as it seemed that we did not have the pace at the beginning of the race.

"As we know, the factory boys have something a little bit more than we do, so unfortunately for us the races do seem to get strung out. But I tried to have the pace for the Ducati of Iannone. I thought I had something.

"With six laps to go I seemed to improve a little bit more. I saved the tyre the best I could and really pushed on hard. But unfortunately at the end there, I just wasn't able to make the difference. That top speed of that bike is just a little bit too much for me.

"Anyway, I have to be pleased. I've just taken over fifth position in the championship. If someone would've told me 10 races in I would be fifth in the championship, I would've taken it a long time ago. So it was a good performance again this weekend. I have to take the positives and try to make another step next weekend."

The result lifts Smith above Andrea Dovizioso to sit three points clear in fifth place in the championship standings.