In a race which will be remembered for a dramatic clash between Marc Marquez and Johann Zarco, Suzuki’s Alex Rins says a collision with race-winner Maverick Vinales hurt his Australian MotoGP charge but took the sole solace of fifth place from Valentino Rossi on the final lap.

With Rins targeting the front group during the opening laps, the Spanish rider was pushed wide at Turn 4 following contact with Vinales on the fourth lap which saw the Suzuki rider drop two places down to ninth.

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After struggling to find a way past Pramac Ducati’s Jack Miller, Rins accepts fifth place was his maximium despite seeing team-mate Andrea Iannone grab the runner-up spot at Phillip Island.

Rins feels it was a racing incident against Vinales, as was deemed the case between Marquez and Zarco in their scary 200mph clash on the home straight, but lamented the impact it had on his race in Australia.

“It was an interesting race and I learnt a lot during the first part of the race as I was feeling good in the first group,” Rins said Then when someone hit me on the back, I think it was Maverick, we then lost all possibilities. I lost the first group and then I lost a lot of time with Miller trying to overtake him.

“On the first few laps I was in front of him and he hit me on the back, I think this is racing but we need to be more aggressive and be more on our side to fight more.

“I think we need to take the positive points which were that we won against Valentino fighting really hard and well. That’s all.”

Despite his frustrations, Rins closed to within one point of the injured Jorge Lorenzo in ninth place in the MotoGP riders’ championship but slipped four points behind teammate Iannone.

The Italian rider now edges their intrateam battle with four podiums to his three so far this year.