Danilo Petrucci survived an occasionally bruising battle with Alex Rins during the Catalunya MotoGP to notch up a third consecutive podium and continue his ascent in the overall standings.

Fresh from his maiden MotoGP win in Mugello, though Petrucci didn’t enjoy the strongest weekend in Catalunya in terms of pure pace having qualified down in seventh after struggling in practice, he took advantage of the four-way pile-up ahead to get in the mix for second place.

Engaging in a thrilling, if at times physical, battle with Rins as the Suzuki man tried to counteract the Ducati’s top speed advantage with some aggressive moves – including one at turn four which resulted in tyre marks being scorched onto his leathers – though he’d get the better of the Spaniard eventually, he couldn’t stop Fabio Quartararo passing him late on.

Nonetheless, a third consecutive podium moves Petrucci into fourth overall, only five points shy of his Ducati team-mate Andrea Dovizioso in second place.

“I'm very happy with this podium. For sure, without the incident during the second lap it would have been harder to seize this result and I'm very sorry for Andrea, who lost a great chance to shine today. I tried to stay with Márquez but it wasn't possible, and Rins and Quartararo were also very fast.

“With Alex, we passed each other many times and once he even hit me on the right side but I was able to reclaim the position quite quickly. Then, when Fabio passed me, I just tried to stay with him and pull away from the pack.

“We scored the best possible result today. After three podiums in a row, we're close to third position in the championship: we need to keep the momentum going at Assen."

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