Momentous second place for Marquez in weather-affected Dutch TT
Marc Marquez?s brilliant and very important second-place finish in one of the trickiest races in recent years was enhanced by the amazing debut win of Honda satellite rider Jack Miller, who perfectly mastered the second part of the Dutch TT.The lottery that is a MotoGP race run in such challenging conditions ruled out a possible podium finish for Dani Pedrosa, who finished in 12th position after crashing on the first lap of the race’s weather-prompted restart. The Assen TT originally started approximately one hour after a strong 15-minute downpour had heavily drenched the track. Marc had chosen a hard rear rain tyre, while Dani opted for the softer version. That proved to be the better solution, so although Marc managed to keep a decent enough pace to maintain fourth position in the race’s first phase, Dani was able to steadily recover ground from the back after the rain started again. He had just overtaken his teammate when the conditions became so difficult that Race Direction decided to put out the red flag on lap 15. That meant that the new grid position for the remaining 12-lap race was determined by the classification of the previous lap—lap 14—with Marc in fifth and Dani sixth. Race 2 got off at 3 p.m., and both Repsol Honda riders went out on the Michelin soft rear rain spec. Marquez started well, entering the first corner first, but he ran wide shortly after and dropped back to third behind Andrea Dovizioso and Valentino Rossi. After the two Italians fell ahead of him and Miller caught and then overtook him, Marc wisely settled for the 20 crucial points that come with second place, thereby extending his championship lead to 24 points over Jorge Lorenzo and 42 over Rossi. Like many others, Dani was betrayed by the tricky conditions and crashed on the first lap after the restart. He determinedly re-joined the race and was able to finish in 12th, and lies 4th in the standings 17 points down on Rossi.