MotoGP: Crutchlow silences the critics

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Cal Crutchlow has silenced his critics by taking a stunning debut MotoGP podium of the 2016 season at Sachsenring, using the wet conditions and his tyres to his advantage to return to the winners’ enclosure for the first time since Argentina last year.

Fast throughout the weekend but balked in qualifying after losing a fast lap to a cruising rider in free practice three saw him up against Jorge Lorenzo and Danilo Petrucci in Q1 – and fail to progress to Q2 – Crutchlow was able to make the most of his tyres in the race to match his best ever result in the premiere class.


Crutchlow also benefitted from the same gamble that eventually handed Marc Marquez his win. Eschewing Michelin’s new intermediate tyres when he switched bikes, the LCR Honda team instead fired him straight onto slick tyres; a move that proved the right one on the drying track.

“It takes a rider with balls to jump straight onto the slicks! Joking aside, I expected intermediates on the bike, which are a good solution for some things. Dovi pulled five seconds on me in the opening lap, and even though I was able to catch him those five seconds could have won the race for me!

“I don’t know who made the call. Normally, we make a plan beforehand, but they’re not stupid; they can see the TV screens and see the line. They do a fantastic job and they’re experienced enough to understand the situation.”


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Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer