Lorenzo takes home victory as Marquez goes down


Former double MotoGP champion, Jorge Lorenzo, scored his fourth consecutive victory of the season after winning an incident filled Spanish Grand Prix at Catalunya yesterday. His win ahead of Yamaha teammate Valtentino Rossi in front of 97 000 partisan fans, also sees him equalling British legend, Mike Hailwood’s record of 37 career victories and leaves him only a point behind the Italian heading into the next round.

“To be honest, the last ten laps of today‘s race were probably one of the most hard and intense laps of my career. Valentino was very fast and knowing that the track was really hot and there was less grip than yesterday, I‘m happy with the results,” he told the MotoGP website.

“When he reduced the gap from two seconds to 1.4, I was really worried that I would lose this race. I needed to push and risk more while the bike was already moving a lot, which is what I did in the last ten laps.”

Starting from third behind the rejuvenated Suzuki’s of Maverick Vinales and pole sitter Aleix Espargaro, Lorenzo pulled off yet another rocket-like start to lead going into the first corner ahead of defending champion Marc Marquez, as both Suzuki riders immediately dropped back having secured the marque’s first pole position lockout since the 1993 Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez.

In what turned out to be a repeat of the last two races at Le Mans and Mugello, matters soon unravelled as first LCR Honda rider Cal Crutchlow went down on the opening lap at turn four, before being followed by Marquez two laps later.

Lying second and within striking range of compatriot Lorenzo, the defending champion arrived at the turn 10 hairpin way to fast, nearly running in the back of the Yamaha and ending up in the gravel trap. Although he managed to right the Honda and continue, it proved to be premature as he headed back to the pits for his second consecutive retirement of the season.

This promoted Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso up to second, which quickly changed to third as Rossi moved passed on lap four. The Italian would however also join the list of casualties as the front of the Ducati washed out on lap six while holding off the fourth placed Repsol Honda of Dani Pedrosa.

Other casualties included the Monster Tech3 Yamaha of Pol Espargaro, Aspar Honda’s Nicky Hayden, Gresini Aprilia rider Marco Melandri and pole-sitter Espargaro, who crashed with five laps to go.

Having benefitted from Dovizioso’s fall, Pedrosa, who made his back at Le Mans following arm surgery after crashing at the season opener in Qatar, experienced a quiet race and managed to bring some consolation for the team by taking the last step on the podium ahead of Italian’s Ducati teammate Andrea Iannone, and the second Monster Tech3 Yamaha of Bradley Smith.

After bogging down as the start, and following his teammate’s fall, Vinales managed to salvage some pride for Suzuki by finishing sixth with the remaining four places being filled by the Marc VDS Honda of Scott Redding, Forward Racing Yamaha’s Stefan Bradl, Pramac Ducati rider Danilo Petrucci and the second Gresini Aprilia of Hector Barbera.

The next round takes place at Assen for the Dutch TT on June 27th


IMAGE sourced from www.winnipegfreepress.com