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18 days ago
By motogp.com

Crutchlow "happy enough" with P6 at Mugello

The Brit took top Independent Team honours at the Italian GP, as well as being the best placed Honda rider

Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) secured P6 at the Gran Premio d’Italia Oakley to earn his best result since his Argentina GP win, crossing the line as top Honda and Independent Team rider at Mugello.

The Brit launched from eighth on the grid and managed to get a solid start, however it wasn’t plain sailing. The 32-year-old was at the back of the battle for the top six throughout the race and it soon became apparent that tyres would be an issue. “I was happy enough with the final position although I needed the fresh air on the front tire and for me, because I was at the back of the group, I roasted them with the heat,” explained the number 35. “The team did a good job. We managed the situation very well and the front tire was a disaster for everybody the whole weekend because the hard for some people was too hard on the right-hand side but for everyone it was too soft. My front tire was too soft on the right-hand side. So, it was a big mess.”

Crutchlow hasn’t had it easy since his terrific Termas de Rio Honda win, which saw him lead the Championship heading to America. Two consecutive DNF’s followed at the Circuit of the Americas and Jerez while in the hunt for a top five finish, with an almightly qualifying crash at Le Mans destroying a chance of fighting for a podium.

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Italian GP: MotoGP™ Full Race

A heroic eighth followed on Sunday of the French GP and it seems Crutchlow is back on the right track after a solid Mugello weekend, despite tyre issues disrupting the Honda’s acceleration. “I was gaining on the other riders in the braking area but, again, I was sacrificing my front tire because on the acceleration we were missing a little bit with the spin.”

Top Honda honours will give the number 35 confidence heading to Barcelona, with Crutchlow just 16 points adrift from second place Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) in the overall standings.

“Now we look forward to working hard for Barcelona and looking to give 100% there as well.”

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