Cal keeps his cool to come fourth
| | CAL ON CHARGE Hard-riding Brit takes it to the factory men at Austin
Cal Crutchlow came away from the third round of the 2017 Motogp season in Austin with mixed feelings after securing an impressive fourth place, but disappointed to have missed out on his second podium of the year.
The double Motogp race winner looked strong throughout the weekend at the Circuit of the Americas as he made himself a regular feature inside the top five – but a crash that left him starting from ninth on the grid instead of a predicted front row meant he had just too big a mountain to climb come the opening laps of Sunday’s race.
He said: “I’m happy enough with the race but disappointed to not have made the podium. I made a good CAL CRUTCHLOW
start but then got Zarco’d in the first lap, lost some time with Lorenzo too, and there was some to-ing and fro-ing that cost me some more time. I could have caught Dani and made it to third, but I left it too late getting past Zarco.
“I could have been further ahead, potentially. To qualify ninth, though – I was p***ed-off about crashing! I didn’t even get to turn 11, not even a third of the way around, and I was seven tenths up on my own best time! If I had continued that, it would have been front row easily.”
Yet while he might not have achieved what he wanted from Sunday’s race, Crutchlow is still doing considerably better than he was this time last year, coming away from the third race of the season with 29 points and fifth place in the championship standings as opposed to 17th place overall 12 months earlier.
“Imagine if I had been fifth in Qatar – we would be a lot higher in the standings than we are now! But we have to take that on the chin, because we made a mistake as a team there and hopefully that won’t bite us in the arse later in the year.
“But I think I’m riding better as a person, we’re all stronger as a manufacturer, and although we’re having to ride around a lot of issues at the minute we all know that it’s going to be a lot, lot better once it does improve. I expect Jerez to be good for Marc and Dani because they tested there, but I don’t think we’re any less competitive than Dani is at the minute – and even than Marc is in some areas.”
‘I could have made it to third, but I left it too late getting past Zarco’
Cal finally gets the better of Yamaha rookie Zarco