Takaaki Nakagami continues to have a 'respectful' relationship with LCR team-mate Cal Crutchlow, but admits things changed between them after Catalunya.

Nakagami launched what Crutchlow felt was an unnecessarily hard pass early in the June race, pushing the Englishman wide and causing him to lose several positions.

When asked on Friday whether Nakagami deserves the 2020 machinery he is seeking from HRC, which would put the Japanese on a par with the support Crutchlow gets, the triple MotoGP race winner made clear they are not the best of friends.

"No, he doesn't deserve it, I don’t think," Crutchlow said. "But I'm not really going to say anything good about him at the moment because my relationship with him is not fantastic. But, it's Honda's decision. I don’t think he deserves it, no. He's had one fifth place in all the grands prix."

Quizzed on the matter on Saturday afternoon in Brno, Nakagami indicated the 'change' between them had been the Catalunya incident combined with a natural rivalry between team-mates.

"My feeling [with Cal] is still okay. Of course, Montmelo during the race, I took a little bit of a risk to overtake him and after that he got angry. But as I said after the race, 'this is racing'," said Nakagami, who uses a year-old bike.

"A little bit changed [after that], but still I'm respectful. Of course I always, let's say, want to beat him, because this is the rival; the team-mate is the biggest of the targets.

"So from my side I didn’t change anything… I'm still respectful and always I compare Cal's data. I feel like this is MotoGP, everybody wants to beat [everyone]. I want to focus on myself because I'm not perfect, still I'm not good enough. This I understand.

"Still we have ten races to go and I want to grow up race-by-race and if I have a chance, not every race but some races, I want to beat Cal."

Crutchlow had added that Nakagami needed to "fight for the top six every week and be on the podium" to justify a 2020 bike.

"I don’t know, because I don’t know his opinion... of course he doesn’t want [me on the] same bike, because it's more rival and I'm growing up," Nakagami responded. "So I understand what Cal said, but finally it will be HRC's decision, not his decision."

Crutchlow qualified 11th and Nakagami 13th at Brno on Saturday.



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