Malaysia MotoGP: Andrea Dovizioso secures second top-class victory

Andrea Dovizioso claimed his second career MotoGP victory and first for Ducati in a dramatic Malaysian Grand Prix, becoming the ninth different winner of the 2016 season

Malaysia MotoGP: Andrea Dovizioso secures second top-class victory

Polesitter Dovizioso was in the lead pack throughout the race at Sepang, which was delayed by 20 minutes and reduced by one lap to 19 due to heavy rain, adding to his 2009 British Grand Prix success with Honda.

Jorge Lorenzo took the lead off the line, but it only lasted until Turn 5, and he was ultimately bundled back down to fifth over the remainder of the lap.

Dovizioso led briefly on that first tour, but was passed by Valentino Rossi at Turn 15, who only led until Andrea Iannone took the lead at Turn 12 on lap two.

In a tight top three between the Ducatis, Rossi looked up the inside of Iannone at Turn 4 and Turn 9 on lap 5, but Iannone emerged ahead both times.

With a cleaner move into Turn 1 on the sixth lap, Rossi claimed the lead but he could not pull away on his Yamaha, with Iannone moving back into top spot at Turn 15.

From there, it was status quo mid-race at the front, the top trio split by about half-a-second, followed by world champion Marc Marquez and LCR Honda's Cal Crutchlow.

Rossi ended that with a move on Iannone at Turn 9 on lap 11, which signalled the start of a dramatic chain of events.

Over the course of two laps, LCR Honda's Crutchlow fell from fifth at Turn 2, Marquez went down at Turn 11 and Iannone was passed by Dovizioso and then crashed out of contention at Turn 9.

That left Rossi and Dovizioso alone at the front with six laps to go, split by 0.159s.

However Rossi ran wide at Turn 1 on the following lap and Dovizioso snuck past, moving into a lead he would not relinquish.

As Rossi's pace dropped with front-tyre concerns, Dovizioso pulled away to win by 3.115 seconds.

Second place was enough for Rossi to secure second in the 2016 championship over his team-mate Lorenzo, who initially hung on behind the lead pack.

However, while Lorenzo fell away, he benefited from the crashes ahead to finish third, 8.809s behind Rossi.

Avintia Ducati's Hector Barbera claimed a career-best result of fourth, getting ahead of team-mate Loris Baz in the closing laps.

Suzuki's Maverick Vinales struggled in the rain and finished sixth, while Aprilia's Alvaro Bautista, Marc VDS Honda's Jack Miller, Tech3 Yamaha's Pol Espargaro and Pramac Ducati's Danilo Petrucci completed the top 10.

Marquez was able to get back on his Honda, after his second race crash in seven days, and picked his way back up the order to finish 11th.

RESULTS - 19 LAPS:

Pos Rider Team Gap
1 Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 42m27.333s
2 Valentino Rossi Yamaha 3.115s
3 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 11.924s
4 Hector Barbera Avintia Ducati 19.916s
5 Loris Baz Avintia Ducati 21.353s
6 Maverick Vinales Suzuki 22.932s
7 Alvaro Bautista Aprilia 25.829s
8 Jack Miller Marc VDS Honda 32.746s
9 Pol Espargaro Tech3 Yamaha 33.704s
10 Danilo Petrucci Pramac Ducati 34.280s
11 Marc Marquez Honda 36.480s
12 Eugene Laverty Aspar Ducati 36.638s
13 Aleix Espargaro Suzuki 36.897s
14 Bradley Smith Tech3 Yamaha 45.609s
15 Scott Redding Pramac Ducati 49.779s
16 Hiroshi Aoyama Honda 52.665s
17 Stefan Bradl Aprilia 52.784s
18 Tito Rabat Marc VDS Honda 54.891s
- Andrea Iannone Ducati Retirement
- Cal Crutchlow LCR Honda Retirement
- Yonny Hernandez Aspar Ducati Retirement

RIDERS CHAMPIONSHIP:

Pos Rider Points
1 Marc Marquez 278
2 Valentino Rossi 236
3 Jorge Lorenzo 208
4 Maverick Vinales 191
5 Andrea Dovizioso 162
6 Dani Pedrosa 155
7 Cal Crutchlow 141
8 Pol Espargaro 124
9 Hector Barbera 97
10 Andrea Iannone 96
11 Aleix Espargaro 85
12 Eugene Laverty 77
13 Alvaro Bautista 76
14 Scott Redding 72
15 Danilo Petrucci 71
16 Stefan Bradl 60
17 Jack Miller 56
18 Bradley Smith 55
19 Michele Pirro 36
20 Loris Baz 35
21 Tito Rabat 29
22 Yonny Hernandez 20
23 Katsuyuki Nakasuga 5
24 Alex Lowes 3
25 Hiroshi Aoyama 1
26 Nicky Hayden 1
27 Mike Jones 1


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