Valentino Rossi was relieved to clinch a front row start for the Dutch MotoGP following his fast fall in FP4 at Assen.

Rossi lost the front in the final free practice session but recovered in qualifying to go third fastest on the Movistar Yamaha, only 0.059s behind pole man Marc Marquez.

The Italian rider achieved his last premier class win at Assen in 2017 and Rossi will be hoping he can challenge for the top step once more on Sunday.

He said: “The front row is always a good result today and also more for me, because in FP4 I suffered a bit and I was quite slow – I expected to be a bit stronger.

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“After, I did a small mistake in the fast corner and maybe I entered a little bit too fast and I lose the front. But I still have 12 minutes, but unfortunately I didn’t have the right tyre so I had to go with the hard front, so I tried to do some laps just to understand.

“After, in the qualifying, I think we worked well because with the first tyre I tried just to recover my feeling and the pace, the line, and I know that everything is decided by the second one,” Rossi added.

“The second one was very exciting because everybody was waiting, and you know that you have just one lap, but I knew that I was in the right position and I was able to ride in a good way without making mistakes and the front row is perfect.”

Rossi has also yet to make a final decision on his choice of rear tyre after trying all three options and says he will leave his decision until as late as possible.

“In this weekend it looks like all the three tyres are not so bad for the race so we try to concentrate like everybody for have a more clear idea on choice, but it is still very open. We will decide tomorrow an hour before the start.”