MotoGP championship leader Andrea Dovizioso believes every point in this year’s championship fight will be crucial and it is critical not to have any more DNFs on the board.
The Ducati man snatched the points’ table top spot at Assen on Sunday when Maverick Vinales crashed out but had to ride a canny race, changing his lines to suit the conditions and tyre wear as he battled with Cal Crutchlow and Marc Marquez for the last podium slot.
“I was really focused to be consistent and fast, and after that crash, I was the fastest in the race. I'm so happy about that, this is so important for the future, for the championship, because this is the reality, we were really fast today, I was able to recover more than four seconds to the first group. So I'm so happy, and I'm so happy to do it in this track. For sure it's not the best track for me,” said Dovizioso, speaking at the track.
“So the fifth position today is a good point, but it's an important fifth position, with a lot of speed, a lot of confidence. I'm not happy with fifth, because I was able to minimum finish third, but the battle of Cal and Marc the last two laps was crazy, I couldn't try to overtake them, so I'm not happy about that.
“But I'm really happy about my speed, about how we worked in the weekend. Also when our position was quite bad, we stayed calm, we worked in the right way. We started in the race with a setup we had never tried, but we believed in it and it worked in the race.
“We confirmed what we did the last two races, we confirmed here we can fight. This is just a motivation and confidence to bring to the next races and the future of the championship. But like today, there were really tricky conditions and there was no reason to crash.
“This championship, like the championship of last year, it's so important to not make a DNF, a zero. Unfortunately, we already did a zero, which was not my fault, and this will affect the championship. I think sometimes like today, you have to not take all the risks you could take.”