Crutchlow: I was “terrified” about crashing out like Marquez

Cal Crutchlow has admitted he was “terrified” about crashing out of the lead of the Australian Grand Prix once he had inherited the top spot from Marc Marquez sliding off his bike.

Crutchlow: I was “terrified” about crashing out like Marquez
Second place qualifying for Cal Crutchlow, Team LCR Honda
Cal Crutchlow, Team LCR Honda
Cal Crutchlow, Team LCR Honda
Cal Crutchlow, Team LCR Honda
Cal Crutchlow, Team LCR Honda
Cal Crutchlow, Team LCR Honda
Cal Crutchlow, Team LCR Honda

The Spaniard led the early stages of the Phillip Island race from Crutchlow, before crashing out at the Honda hairpin on Lap 10 as a result of his front tyre folding beneath him.

Despite being on the same harder option tyre as Marquez, Crutchlow avoided making a similar error and was able to pull away from Valentino Rossi behind to secure his second career MotoGP win.

But, speaking afterwards, the Briton admitted the thought of falling at the Honda hairpin was on his mind for the rest of the race after Marquez’s exit.

“I was terrified,” said Crutchlow. “I braked really weak into that corner for the whole race.

“I knew it was critical. I crashed there two years ago, and I was scared because I didn’t want to make the same mistake.

“But I knew I had to keep pushing or else I would lose the heat in the front tyre. When [Marquez] crashed I thought ‘what do I do?’ So I carried on at the same pace.

“The last 10 or 12 laps I didn't really push, I just made sure I kept the heat in the tyre. I pushed on the laps the sun was in, to heat the front tyre."

Having taken his first win earlier this year in mixed conditions at Brno, Crutchlow said he had been targeting a dry victory – and that he feels he could have won even if Marquez didn’t crash out.

“I believe I could have beaten Marc anyway,” he said. “I lost time at the start and let him get away, but he made a couple of mistakes before [he crashed].

“My aim was to win two races this year, and after I won one in the wet [at Brno] my other aim was to win one in the dry and we’ve done that.

“I always go well round the Island. There are some tracks we targeted, and this was one.”

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