MotoGP: Maverick Vinales has edge over Marc Marquez at Assen

Mavereck Vinales celebrates his Assen victory with his Monster Yamaha team.
Mavereck Vinales celebrates his Assen victory with his Monster Yamaha team.

Over 100,000 fans watched Monster Energy Yamaha rider Maverick Viñales take a stunning victory at Assen the ‘Cathedral of speed’, his first of the season.

Petronas Yamaha rider Fabio Quatararo started from pole position, but Alex Rins on the Team Suzuki Ecstar got the holeshot and led for the initial stages, before he made a mistake while pushing at the front and crashed.

As the race progressed it was a battle between Quartararo, Marc Marquez on the Repsol Honda and Viñales all taking turns at the front until Viñales made a decisive move on lap-16 and pulled away to take victory over reigning world champion Marc Marquez, who increased his lead at the top of the championship to 44 points over Andrea Dovizioso who finished fourth on the Mission Winnow Ducati behind the rookie French sensation Quatararo.

Top British finisher was Cal Crutchlow, in seventh on the LCR Honda.

“It feels like I’m dreaming,” said Vinales.

“These have been difficult times for me but I’ve tried to keep the momentum from Catalunya, because I felt really good on the bike.

“I’m so grateful to the team, because they did a great job this weekend and prepared well for the last laps of the race. I was strong, even one-to-one on the brakes, I knew I could make the overtakes,” he added.

Being back on the top step of the podium again feels really good and bringing Yamaha back to its winning ways is the most important to me.”

Runner-up Marquez said: “I saw Viñales was faster than me and I tried to stay with him to avoid a battle with Quartararo at the end. Congratulations to him on the victory.

“The most important part is we have extended our lead in the championship at a circuit where we struggle.”

British rider Jake Dixon took his first ever Grand Prix points in the Moto2 class after finishing 12th while John McPhee was fifth in the Moto3 race.