Rossi rules in Spain to deny home favourites

Updated: 

Valentino Rossi claimed his first MotoGP victory of the season to deny home favourites Jorge Lorenzo and Marc Marquez at the Spanish Grand Prix.

The 37-year-old, who failed to finish at the Circuit of the Americas last time out, led from start to finish to wrap up the win.

Rossi, a six-time world champion, capped an impressive few days in Jerez with a nerveless display that saw him keep the pressure on championship leader Marquez and reigning champion Lorenzo.

The Yamaha rider fended off an early challenge from team-mate Lorenzo and enjoyed a relatively comfortable 27 laps, finishing 2.386 seconds clear.

Honda's Dani Pedrosa had to settle for fourth, with Suzuki duo Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Vinales rounding out the top six.

The field will head to France next month, where Lorenzo was victorious last year.

 

ROSSI CAN'T KICK WINNING HABIT

Sunday's result was Rossi's 113th career victory and he became the ninth oldest winner of a MotoGP race, chalking up an 87th premier-class triumph in the process. Always one to celebrate in style, Rossi treated fans to the familiar sight of him pulling a wheelie across the line.

 

DUCATI DISTRACTION FOR LORENZO?

In the first race since it was announced Lorenzo would be joining Ducati for the 2017 season, the Spaniard tired to put off-track-talk to one side with an aggressive start, but it was not enough to get one over on his team-mate.

 

SCANT CONSOLATION FOR IANNONE 

There was some consolation for Andrea Iannone after the Ducati rider endured a weekend beset by power delivery issues, the Italian climbing from 11th on the grid to take seventh spot.

 

IN THE POINTS

1. Valentino Rossi (Yahama)
2. Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) +2.386secs
3. Marc Marquez (Honda) + 7.087s
4. Daniel Pedrosa (Honda) +10.351s
5. Aleix Espargaro (Suzuki) +14.143s
6. Maverick Vinales (Suzuki) +16.772s
7. Andrea Iannone (Ducati) + 26.277s
8. Pol Espargaro (Yamaha) +30.750s
9. Eugene Laverty (Ducati) + 32.325s
10. Hector Barbera (Ducati) +32.624s


TITLE STANDINGS

Marc Marquez 82
Jorge Lorenzo 65 (+17)
Valentino Rossi 58 (+24)
Dani Pedrosa 40 (+42)
Pol Espargaro 36 (+46)

Yamaha 90
Honda 82 (+8)
Ducati 58 (+32)
Suzuki 39 (+51)
Aprilia 20 (+70)


NEXT UP

The field will head to France on May 8, a circuit where Lorenzo was victorious in 2015.