Six points for Jack after his best MotoGP finish in Barcelona.
Jack has recorded the best MotoGP finish of his career at Sunday’s Grand Prix of Catalunya, the Townsville 21-year-old finishing 10th on his Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Honda for his first points finish in six races.
Starting from 19th on the grid, Jack’s result was a good end to a difficult weekend for all the riders and everyone in the MotoGP paddock, which was rocked by the death of Spanish Moto2 rider Luis Salom in a practice accident on Friday.
Jack made up two places on the opening lap to jump to 17th, and then moved past Ducati rider Eugene Laverty to 15th and a points-paying position on lap four.
After pushing past Laverty’s teammate Yonny Hernandez on lap 12, Jack looked set for a lonely ride in 13th place before Ducati’s Andrea Iannone and Yamaha’s reigning world champion Jorge Lorenzo crashed at the end of the back straight, elevating him to 10th.
Aprilia rider Alvaro Bautista dropped Jack back to 11th with six laps remaining, but Jack honed in on Ducati rider Hector Barbera as the laps wound down, passing him in the final sequence of corners only for Barbera to re-join ahead of him after leaving the circuit. The Spaniard was penalised one position after the race, elevating Jack to a career-best MotoGP finish at the same circuit where he recorded the best finish of his MotoGP rookie season a year ago, when he came home 11th.
“I’m really happy to be back in the points and I had a big fight throughout the race and really enjoyed it,” Jack said.
“I tried to conserve my tyres because I knew we would lose some grip in the hot conditions and it was a strategy that paid off. I definitely feel like I got the most potential out of the bike today. I tried to save the tyres in Jerez and I probably conserved them too much and felt I could have pushed more. But today I gave it my all and I used the whole performance potential of the rear tyre.
“To finish in the top 10 for the first time in my MotoGP career is a really big boost for me. My guys have stuck with me all through a difficult first part of the season and I’m happy for the team. And I dedicate my first top 10 in MotoGP to my friend Luis Salom, who I will miss greatly.”
With eight points, Jack now sits in 20th place in the world championship standings.
The race, held in front of a packed house of 99,575 fans, was won by Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi, who emerged triumphant from a gripping battle with Honda adversary Marc Marquez.
Jack’s next race will come at the Dutch TT at Assen in three weeks’ time.
Full race results from Catalunya can be found on motogp.com here.
Photos courtesy of Marc VDS.