Circuit: TT Assen Circuit
TV: BT Sport
Marc Marquez will be desperate to win the Dutch MotoGP race if only to stop the charge of fellow Spaniard Jorge Lorenzo.
Marquez continues to head the standings on his Repsol Honda but the back-to-back wins of compatriot Lorenzo on the factory Ducati will have made him take notice.
The pair are to team up at Honda next season but it is the 2018 world title which is of immediate concern to both.
The turnaround in Lorenzo’s fortunes over the last two races has been nothing short of incredible and the Spaniard will doubtless have an extravagant victory celebration planned should he make it three wins in a row in Holland.
Valentino Rossi has a winning history at Assen, having won three of the last five races there, and the Italian taking the top step of the podium would be a welcome sight.
The Italian remains the most popular rider amongst fans and a win for him at the circuit known as the cathedral of racing would be almost universally celebrated.
There is perhaps a little more value in LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow for the win with the British rider priced at 18/1 to take his second race win of the season.
A win for Crutchlow would go down well with the legions of British fans who make the annual pilgrimage to the race known by fans as the Dutch TT.
Two years ago Australian Jack Miller won a wet race at Assen so anyone tempted by his current price of 66/1 will be praying for rain come race day.
How the Catalunya Grand Prix finished:
1 Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati), 2 Marc Marquez (Honda), 3 Valentino Rossi (Yamaha), 4 Cal Crutchlow (Honda), 5 Dani Pedrosa (Honda), 6 Maverick Vinales (Yamaha), 7 Johann Zarco (Yamaha), 8 Danilo Petrucci (Ducati), 9 Alvaro Bautista (Ducati), 10 Andrea Iannone (Suzuki), 11 Pol Espargaro (KTM), 12 Scott Redding (Aprilia), 13 Karel Abraham (Ducati), 14 Franco Morbidelli (Honda), DNF Hafizh Syahrin (Yamaha), Tito Rabat (Ducati), Jack Miller (Ducati), Bradley Smith (KTM), Takaaki Nakagami (Honda), Alex Rins (Suzuki), Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati), Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia), Thomas Luthi (Honda), Sylvain Guintoli (Suzuki), Mika Kallio (KTM).
Lorenzo made it two wins from as many races in Catalunya and added more evidence to suggest Ducati may have slipped up in letting him leave at the end of the season.
The former champion has gone from also-ran to race winner in Italy and Catalunya and the fact he is moving to Honda in 2019 will give Ducati bosses some pause for thought.
His struggles over the last season and a half have been put in perspective in the last two races and he has been transformed from a rider contemplating racing on a satellite Yamaha team next season to being team-mate to Marquez at Repsol Honda.
Marquez struggled to hold pace with Lorenzo at the Catalunya race and had to be satisfied with second place to increase his lead in the points standings to 27 over second-placed Rossi.
The Movistar Yamaha rider was just happy to be back on the podium in Catalunya where he led home the LCR Honda of Crutchlow, Marquez’s team-mate Dani Pedrosa and Rossi’s own team-mate Vinales.
The seventh-placed finish of Zarco was perhaps evidence that the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 rider’s pre-season status as possible title contender has not been borne out during the championship itself.
Ducati pair Danilo Petrucci and Alvaro Bautista and Suzuki Ecstar’s Andrea Iannone rounded out the top 10.
Dovizioso’s failure to finish has seen the rider tipped to repeat last season’s performance when he was Marquez’s closest title challenger slip back to eighth in the table and behind fast-improving team-mate Lorenzo.
Past Dutch Grand Prix results:
2017: Valentino Rossi (Yamaha)
2016: Jack Miller (Honda)
2015: Valentino Rossi (Yamaha)
2014: Marc Marquez (Honda)
2013: Valentino Rossi (Yamaha)
2012: Casey Stoner (Honda)
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