Cal Crutchlow says he has momentum on his side as he bids to follow up his runner-up finish in Japan with another podium this weekend at Phillip Island.

The LCR Honda rider was gifted second place last weekend at Motegi when Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso slid off on the penultimate lap as he battled for the lead with Marc Marquez.

Crutchlow managed to keep Alex Rins at bay to snatch second place and the British rider is hoping he can finish in the top three again on Sunday at the scenic Australian circuit, where he was a winner in 2016.

“We have to take on board that we had a great race last weekend in Japan and the team did a great job for me to finish in second place. I think that the momentum is there and I think I’m riding well in the moment,” Crutchlow said.

“But to repeat 2016 is difficult and to have a 1.6 second lead doesn’t usually happen here, as we saw from last year’s race, which was so tight with many passes and a lot of riders able to challenge for the win. If you look on paper now, I think there are potentially ten guys who could possibly win this race, but there are only three spots on the podium, so I think you’ll get to see a good race first and foremost,” he added.

“I think we will all enjoy and hopefully have a good battle and we will see where we finish come Sunday afternoon.”

Looking back to his victory two years ago, Crutchlow said he had ‘no idea’ how he managed to break clear at the front, although he says the experienced riders at Phillip Island can benefit from utilising the ‘tricks of the trade’.

“I have no idea – I won the race and I pushed, but it is easier said than done. If somebody is behind you, they can easily slipstream you into Turn 1 and ruin the lap that you might be able to put (in) to get away,” he said.

“It’s quite a tactical track here I think and there are a few tricks of the trade that you can do, but I think it is important to lead and then you have the opportunity to go away. If you look at the race of Marc last year, he took the opportunity at the perfect time and was able to go away because the rest were battling, so we will attempt to use those tricks of the trade on Sunday and see how it goes.”