Jack mounts a comeback charge after being pushed well down the order for a second top-10 result in succession.
Jack has backed up his superb run to seventh at last weekend’s Australian Grand Prix with a strong ride to eighth place at the Malaysian Grand Prix on Sunday afternoon.
While last week’s race at Phillip Island saw Jack scamper away at the front of the field before being reeled in by his rivals, Malaysia saw the Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider fight back from dropping to 14th on the second lap as the field slithered its way around the Sepang Circuit, the track made slick with rain after a typical tropical late-afternoon downpour half an hour before the start of the race.
Starting from 11th after his second direct entry into Q2 in a week, Jack stormed down the inside at Turn 1 and touched with Maverick Vinales (Yamaha) as he briefly rose to eighth place.
After being swamped on lap two, Jack was stuck outside the top 10 for much of the first half of the race before beginning his comeback charge, scything past Pol Espargaro (KTM) at Turn 4 on lap 13 to jump to 10th.
Jack’s next decisive moment came with five laps to go, when he overtook Ducati pair Alvaro Bautista and Scott Redding to jump to eighth. A valiant pursuit of Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) fell short in the closing laps, Jack scoring eight world championship points while finishing 35.238secs behind race-winner Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati).
“The opening laps were not easy with the grip levels and it was struggle to stay on the track – especially when I was on the left side of the tyre, I was just trying to stay on two wheels. It was a little scary,” Jack said.
“But from halfway in the race the rear tyre started working better and I was able to make up some positions and grab eighth. Overall a good weekend, I was very strong in the dry and this was my second top 10 since coming back from the broken leg, so I’m now looking for more points in Valencia.”
With Dovizioso taking his sixth win of the season and world championship leader Marc Marquez (Honda) finishing fourth, the championship will go down to the deciding race of the season at Valencia on November 12, Marquez leading the standings by 21 points.
With his eighth top-10 result of the year, Jack consolidated his 12th place in the championship and sits on 73 points, two points behind Bautista and 11 points adrift of 10th-placed Yamaha rider Jonas Folger, who will miss the season finale with illness.
Full race results from Malaysia can be found on motogp.com here.
Photos courtesy of Marc VDS.