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MotoGP, Marquez, Lorenzo and Rossi: three profs taking the Assen test

The Dutch race will take place on Sunday for the first time. Valentino wants to close the gap, the Spaniards want to win

Marquez, Lorenzo and Rossi: three profs taking the Assen test

Everything has been said and written about Assen, the track isn't what it once was, there is no longer the traditional Saturday race... Despite all this though, the Dutch track (almost) always manages to pull off spectacular races that are unpredictable right to the final chicane.

This year there will be three big names battling it out, in the shape of Marquez, Lorenzo and Rossi. We list them in order of their championship positions, with Marc currently leading, 10 points ahead of Jorge and 22 ahead of Valentino. Assen was the setting for a much talked about duel last season, where the Doctor won after a controversial cutting of the chicane.

Putting past controversies aside, the Italian and the Spaniard are experts around this particular track and Marc is looking forward to the Dutch round because his Honda should have less trouble on what is a flowing track with no low-speed acceleration required. Marquez wants to get back to winning ways, having not won a race since Texas. While it's good to manage the races effectively, to win the title you can't always be on the defence.

One who's sure to be on the attack is Valentino, at one of his best tracks, where he won in 2013 after a fast of more than two years. Since then, he's won two out of the three GPs, which says a lot about the competitiveness of the Rossi-Yamaha pairing in Holland. Barcelona has moved him back up the classification and to further close the gap he needs to finish on top.

Lorenzo too, though he's never really proved to be unbeatable at Assen. His last win dates back to 2010, after which he scored podium finishes right up until last year. But Jorge shouldn't be underestimated because the Majorcan is someone who bounces back quickly and hits hard when you least expect it

A little like Pedrosa, the outsider. In truth Dani has never won at Assen in MotoGP, and only once in 125, back in 2002. The Spaniard is struggling with both the bike and particularly the tyres this season, so the performance of the Michelins will make all the difference in his case.

Lastly, Ducati, whose only win in The Netherlands was with Stoner. In recent races the GP16 hasn't exactly shone and Assen isn't a track that particularly suits its characteristics, but the Desmosedici nevertheless needs to prove that it is competitive on all surfaces. Iannone will start last after receiving a penalty at Barcelona, Dovizioso will need to find that certain something that he's been missing.

The Dutch GP won't be boring that's for sure.

Translated by Heather Watson

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