2018 MotoGP graduate Franco Morbidelli has shown exactly why he’s the first of the middleweight class to be confirmed as moving up to MotoGP next year after a careful performance in tricky conditions left him taking win number five of the 2017 season a t the Dutch TT.
Key title rival Tom Lüthi took a close and hard-fought second, with Takaaki Nakagami completing the podium after some final chicane shenanigans with Mattia Pasini.
The two points leaders were clear at the front for the final duel and the Italian struck early against the Swiss rider. Lüthi found himself just too far back at the final chicane, taking a solid second and another twenty points for his title push - leaving Morbidelli to take another stunning victory after recently announcing his graduation to the premier class next year.
It was a dramatic fight to complete the podium, as Nakagami took Pasini and the Italian headed over the run off towards the line in some last chicane shenanigans emblematic of the TT Circuit Assen. Third at the flag but then demoted, Pasini was classified fourth as Nakagami pulled into parc ferme to complete the podium.
Miguel Oliveira stayed out of trouble at the chicane to take fifth, with Alex Marquez then completing the top six after struggling with grip in the latter stages.