MotoGP: Smith gutted to have Assen charge halted

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Bradley Smith has been left gutted to have his Assen charge halted at Assen, after putting in what he described as one of his best laps of the season just before crashing out.

Making good progress in the opening part of Sunday’s red-flagged and restarted race at the Dutch track, he found his pace with the softer Michelin wet in the second part – until it all went wrong.

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“In part two, I felt a lot better because we were able to start with the softer compound of rear tyre, and twelve laps gave us that chance. I immediately made up a lot of positions in the opening lap, and in fact, I would say that it was one of the most competitive laps that I’ve had this season.

“Then unfortunately, like many other riders, I fell because I lost the front as it was pushed too much by the extra grip from the rear. Even though it’s another disappointing weekend, it was nice to finish and get some points because the team has worked really hard.”

Smith, normally one of the loudest voices on the riders safety commission, also admitted afterwards that race direction had made the right call on stopping the race – even if he believes it should have happened even earlier than it did.

“We had a lot of rain and to be honest, it would have be nice to stop a few laps earlier because it was quite unsafe. It’s always difficult for race direction to understand the right moment but this is something we need to talk about in the future at safety commissions.”

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Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer