Moto GP: 'This could be a decisive weekend' - Steve Parrish column

By Steve ParrishBBC motorcycling commentator

Did we see the decisive moment in this year's MotoGP championship in Assen?

Jorge Lorenzo was looking good with a 25-point lead at the top of the standings going into Saturday's race but he didn't get as far as turn one before he was taken out by Alvaro Bautista.

Casey Stoner was able to get the job done and win the race and we are now all square.

Time is a great healer, but for Lorenzo he can never get those 25 points back.

It goes to show that you have never got a big enough lead in the championship until you are 26 points ahead with one race to go. Anything can happen and it has blown the championship wide open again.

Stoner got wiped out by Valentino Rossi in a similar incident last year but still went on to win the title, but this swing in points could be crucial in the championship this year.

We won't know until later in the year.

As it was, a very embarrassed Mr Bautista got it all wrong and he was given a penalty.

He'll start at the back of the grid in Germany next week and I don't know if that's a good idea or not - he could wipe out the whole grid from there!

I do feel sorry for him though. Nobody tries to take people out of a race, but it was a moment of brain fade.

He was trying to make up far too much time and he took out the championship leader, which is the worst person in the world to hit.

He won't be getting a factory Yamaha ride any time soon, that's for sure.

Jorge Lorenzo wanted a bigger punishment for Bautista but it's a very difficult situation. He just screwed up, and humans make mistakes. He did need penalising, and it's not his first misdemenaour but these things happen in racing.

It was lucky more people weren't taken out by the incident, but Cal Crutchlow wasn't impressed as it ruined his race as well to a certain extent.

Cal rode superbly again to come through the field, and he looked in real pain at the end of it. It could have been Cal's podium day but luck is not on his side.

As for Stoner, he looked like he had the bike sorted out at last, he didn't complain about anything at the end of the race which is most unusual.

He seemed very happy and I can't imagine why someone who is enoying racing so much and winning races wants to pack it all in. But he does and that is still his decision.

We are straight back in action next weekend, the second of three races in three weeks, so it's a very important time in what is shaping up to be a classic championship.

Steve was talking to BBC Sport's Tom Rostance

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