Cal Crutchlow is satisfied to have come away from the fourth round of the World Supersport Championship with a useful lead in the standings, despite missing out on victory by a tenth at Assen.
Crutchlow was the big favourite heading into the race having dominated practice and qualifying, but found himself with work to do when he struggled to get off the start line.
Dropping down to tenth position, Crutchlow battled his way back into contention, pulling along Yamaha SSP team-mate Fabien Foret in the process.
However, Foret proved to be Crutchlow's biggest nemesis in the race, the pair swapping places several times before the British rider planted a move on him at the hairpin, one that sent them both wide and seemingly out of contention for victory.
Nonetheless, in clear air Crutchlow was the dominant force, quickly catching leaders Eugene Laverty and Joan Lascorz before launching a victory assault on the final lap. Despite getting past Laverty, a failed attempt at passing Lascorz for the lead resulted in him moving back to third.
Crutchlow continued to persevere though, pouncing on Lascorz at the final corner to follow Laverty across the line and finish in second place.
“I had a bad start, I don't really know what happened, it was just unfortunate I felt like I was in neutral gear,” he said. “I worked my hardest to get back through. Unfortunately Fabien and I got caught up together and it held us up a bit.
“Team Yamaha did a great job for me, we're here again on the podium and still leading the championship so it's all good. It was a fantastic job by Eugene Laverty, so well done to their team as well.”
Crutchlow now leads Laverty in the overall standings by six points.