CAL Crutchlow ended his Ducati career on a high after finishing fifth in the final MotoGP race of the season in Valencia.
The Coventry-born rider ran almost the entire race together on Sunday with team mate Andrea Dovizioso at the Ricardo Tormo Circuit in Cheste.
The Ducati pair swapped places a number of times throughout the race but it was Dovizioso who took the chequered flag in fourth while Crutchlow crossed one place behind in fifth.
The race was disturbed by a light rain that began to fall half-way through, forcing the riders to slow down to avoid any problems caused by the damp track.
It was Crutchlow’s last race for Ducati before he moves to continues his career in the sport with Honda next year.
“I think it’s been a fitting end to the year to finish, with Andrea and me together in fourth and fifth, we did a good job.” said Crutchlow.
“I believe I should have pushed a little bit more in the tricky conditions created by the rain, but we could also have been strong for this result in the full dry conditions.
“I was pleased for the weekend, I felt my race pace was good and we made a good race with Andrea so I’m happy with the final race of the season.
“Obviously a big thanks to Ducati and all the guys in the team: they did a great job and it’ll be sad to leave. Good luck to them all in the future.”
Luigi Dall’Igna, Ducati’s general manager, said the team can now put the 2014 season behind them with a positive result.
“The past 12 months have been very intense and demanding, but also full of satisfaction.
“Together with the guys in Ducati Corse and our riders we have managed to constantly improve the performance of our bikes, scoring three podium finishes but above all succeeding in reducing the gap to the frontrunners to within the limits that we had fixed as a target.
“We fondly say goodbye to Cal Crutchlow and sincerely wish him all the best for his new adventure.”
Cal Crutchlow salutes the crowd the crowd in Valencia. (s)