Sepang MotoGP: Pedrosa wins, Rossi and Marquez clash

Dani Pedrosa led Jorge Lorenzo home in a Malaysian Grand Prix dominated by MotoGP championship leader Valentino Rossi's apparently deliberate clash with Marc Marquez

Sepang MotoGP: Pedrosa wins, Rossi and Marquez clash

The once friendly relationship between Marquez and Rossi had turned sour prior to the Sepang race when Rossi vehemently criticised Marquez's riding in the preceding Phillip Island event, accusing the Spaniard of helping Lorenzo's title bid and bearing grudges from clashes earlier in the 2015 season.

They then became embroiled in a ferocious battle for third place in the opening laps in Malaysia, repeatedly passing and repassing each other in a series of tight moves.

Rossi gesticulated at Marquez in frustration after one pass, and then after the Honda went around the Yamaha's outside at Turn 13, Rossi appeared to slow, look towards his rival and drift wide into him.

An incensed Marquez fell to the ground and then retired in the pits, while Rossi continued to finish third.

MotoGP race direction immediately announced that it would investigate the incident after the grand prix.

Lorenzo has already reduced Rossi's championship lead to seven points by finishing second.

The Spaniard dropped from fourth to sixth behind the Ducatis off the line, but outbraked both Andrea Iannone and Andrea Dovizioso into Turn 4 on the opening lap.

He then passed Rossi next time around before catching Marquez and taking his second place when the Honda ran slightly wide at Turn 4.

Lorenzo attempted to catch Pedrosa, but the polesitter always had the race under control, leading every lap and inching away to take his second win in the last three races and his third from the last four Malaysian GPs.

Neither Ducati reached the finish: Iannone slowed early on with a mechanical problem, and Dovizioso crashed out in an incident with Cal Crutchlow.

Bradley Smith charged from ninth to fourth place for Tech 3 Yamaha, ahead of Crutchlow's LCR Honda, with Pramac Ducati rider Danilo Petrucci also making good progress to beat the battling Suzukis of Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Vinales to sixth.

Pol Espargaro was ninth despite sustaining a back injury when he was taken out by Hector Barbera in a warm-up collision.

Barbera received a penalty point for the clash, which added to his tally from the earlier in the season meant he was demoted from 10th to the back of the grid. He recovered to 13th.

Stefan Bradl completed the top 10 in a strong performance for Aprilia.

RESULTS - 20 LAPS:

Pos Rider Team Bike Gap
1 Dani Pedrosa Honda Honda 40m37.691s
2 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha Yamaha 3.612s
3 Valentino Rossi Yamaha Yamaha 13.724s
4 Bradley Smith Tech 3 Yamaha 23.995s
5 Cal Crutchlow LCR Honda 28.721s
6 Danilo Petrucci Pramac Racing Ducati 36.372s
7 Aleix Espargaro Suzuki Suzuki 39.290s
8 Maverick Vinales Suzuki Suzuki 39.436s
9 Pol Espargaro Tech 3 Yamaha 42.462s
10 Stefan Bradl Aprilia Gresini Aprilia 44.601s
11 Scott Redding Marc VDS Honda 47.690s
12 Yonny Hernandez Pramac Racing Ducati 52.112s
13 Hector Barbera Avintia Racing Ducati 52.360s
14 Toni Elias Forward Racing Yamaha Forward 53.619s
15 Alvaro Bautista Aprilia Gresini Aprilia 53.631s
16 Nicky Hayden Aspar Honda 1m01.431s
17 Jack Miller LCR Honda 1m02.828s
18 Mike Di Meglio Avintia Racing Ducati 1m05.075s
19 Eugene Laverty Aspar Honda 1m09.877s
20 Anthony West AB Motoracing Honda 1m24.749s
- Andrea Dovizioso Ducati Ducati Retirement
- Marc Marquez Honda Honda Retirement
- Loris Baz Forward Racing Yamaha Forward Retirement
- Andrea Iannone Ducati Ducati Retirement
- Damian Cudlin IodaRacing Project ART/Aprilia Retirement

CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS:

Pos Rider Points
1 Valentino Rossi 312
2 Jorge Lorenzo 305
3 Marc Marquez 222
4 Dani Pedrosa 190
5 Andrea Iannone 188
6 Bradley Smith 171
7 Andrea Dovizioso 153
8 Cal Crutchlow 118
9 Danilo Petrucci 107
10 Pol Espargaro 103
11 Aleix Espargaro 97
12 Maverick Vinales 92
13 Scott Redding 83
14 Yonny Hernandez 53
15 Hector Barbera 33
16 Alvaro Bautista 29
17 Loris Baz 28
18 Stefan Bradl 17
19 Jack Miller 17
20 Nicky Hayden 16
21 Eugene Laverty 9
22 Katsuyuki Nakasuga 8
22 Michele Pirro 8
24 Mike Di Meglio 8
25 Hiroshi Aoyama 5
26 Takumi Takahashi 4
27 Toni Elias 2
28 Alex de Angelis 2


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Sepang MotoGP: Dani Pedrosa scores dominant pole in Honda 1-2

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