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25 days ago
By motogp.com

Season so far: Dutch Grand Prix recap

As one Monster Energy Yamaha man grabbed Assen victory another was grabbing headlines as Viñales split from the Iwata factory

For the fourth time in 2021, Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) tasted victory after delivering a pitch-perfect performance at the Cathedral of Speed to lead a factory Yamaha 1-2 at the Motul TT Assen. Maverick Viñales goes from last in Germany to second in the Netherlands, a fantastic return to form, as reigning World Champion Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar) battled his way to a third podium of the season.

UNSEEN: QUARTARARO'S ELATION & VIÑALES' MUTED CELEBRATIONS

UNSEEN: Quartararo's elation and Viñales' muted celebrations

You could cut the tension in the factory Yamaha box with a knife following the Assen race. Despite clinching their first one-two finish of 2021, there was just something in the air that didn't feel right. Quartararo was understandably thrilled by a fourth win of the year and extending his title lead, whilst Viñales' absence from it all was noticeable.

PROMISING WEEKEND ENDS IN DISAPPOINTMENT FOR ROSSI

Promising weekend ends in disappointment for Rossi

The Doctor was showcasing some form of old during both Friday and Saturday at Assen, with hopes building ahead of Sunday's main event that he could grab a season-best finish. However, after a poor start, the nine-time World Champion's frustrating start to 2021 had yet another turn when the front-end of his Petronas Yamaha SRT machine folded from beneath him.

MARQUEZ'S STUNNING START SEES HIM GAIN EIGHT PLACES ON OPENING LAP

OnBoard: Marquez gains eight places in remarkable first lap

Expectations were obviously raised for the eight-time World Champion heading to Assen after victory just one week prior in Germany. Therefore qualifying 20th on Saturday came as a bit of a shock but the Spaniard was undeterred. His start was nothing short of incredible as he gained a remarkable eight places on the first lap alone.

MUST-SEE: VIÑALES SPEAKS ON APRILIA RUMOURS FOR THE FIRST TIME

MUST-SEE: Viñales speaks for first time on Aprilia rumours

It was the off-track story that dominated the weekend. Is Maverick Viñales heading to Aprilia in one of the most shocking MotoGP™ switches in recent memory? At this time, the news was yet to break about him ending his Yamaha contract twelve months early, so a tight-lipped Top Gun didn't give too much away.

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