It was at last year's Dutch MotoGP that Marc Marquez switched from the 2015 Honda chassis back to the 2014 design.

The Spaniard made the decision after battling unpredictable rear-end slides from the 2015 RCV and falling in the previous two races.

But one year later - despite MotoGP switching from Bridgestone to Michelin tyres, plus the introduction of unified ECU software - the Spaniard is still using the 2014 frame at this weekend's Assen event.

And with good reason: Marquez has won two races this season and is leading the world championship. So what is it about the 2014 frame that he likes so much?

"The 2014 chassis is the one that last year I came back to in this race and still I'm using this one," he confirmed. "It gives me a lot of confidence with the front tyre. Confidence and warning, which is important."

The double world champion has tried several newer designs, most recently at the post-race test in Catalunya, but feels the 2014 remains the best overall design.

"For example, when I tried the new chassis in Montmelo [test] it was in some parts better, but in other parts - like corner entry - it was worse," he explained. "So we are trying to find the best compromise to adjust the back of the new chassis to this 2014 chassis, because I think it can be a good solution."

Marquez was speaking after finishing third in Friday practice, just 0.133s behind Ducati pace setter Andrea Iannone.

"I'm happy because, ok for the lap time, one lap they were stronger and they did a really good lap time. But for the pace I'm near the top. It's not the main target on Friday, but it means we are already there.

"Of course we need to improve and decide which rear tyre to use... Iannone is fastest today, but he will start last and the most important guys for the championship are Rossi and Lorenzo."

Rossi was second and Lorenzo fifth.

By Peter McLaren