A last gasp overtaking move saw Marc Marquez snatch victory from Jorge Lorenzo in an incredible Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island.
The reigning world champion had been firmly in the hunt for victory throughout but it was a final lap surge that allowed Marquez to pass Lorenzo to take the chequered flag in a breathtaking climax.
Lorenzo, who had led the majority of the encounter, was left to settle for second, with Ducati’s Andrea Iannone coming home in third ahead of championship leader Valentino Rossi.
The result has seen the title race take another twist with Lorenzo cutting the deficit to Rossi to 11 points.
Marquez’s victory was his 50th career MotoGP win, while Yamaha secured the manufacturers’ crown.
The battle for victory quickly developed into a thrilling four rider battle between Lorenzo (Yamaha), Marquez (Honda), Iannone (Ducati) and Rossi (Yamaha).
Iannone initially led the contest as he made the most of his Ducati’s supreme straight-line speed.
The pace advantage ensured he would play a factor throughout the race although the Italian was lucky not to lose momentum when he was struck by a seagull on the second lap.
It wasn’t long before Lorenzo moved into the lead and began to gap the field, opening up a 1.1s lead over the squabbling trio of Iannone, Marquez and Rossi.
With Lorenzo starting to drift away at the front, Marquez set his sights on reeling in the Yamaha rider midway through the race, bringing Rossi and Marquez along with him.
In the end, it came down to a straight fight between Lorenzo and Marquez, with the latter making the most of the fastest lap of the race on the final tour to complete a thrilling victory.
Iannone, who swapped positions with Rossi on several occasions during the race, just edged the nine-time world champion to third.
Behind the drama at the front, Honda’s Dani Pedrosa came home in fifth ahead of Suzuki’s Maverick Vinales, LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow and Tech 3 Yamaha’s Pol Espargaro.
LCR Honda’s Jack Miller managed to haul his Open class bike to 15th spot to secure a point, while fellow countryman Anthony West finished in 23rd spot.
New South Welshman Damian Cudlin, deputising for the injured Alex de Angelis, retired from the race.
Alex Rins proved untouchable in Moto2 as he recorded his second victory of the season with a comfortable 6.6s margin over Sam Lowes and Lorenzo Baldassarri.
Australian Josh Hook managed to bring his Technomag Racing Interwetten machine home in 20th position.
In Moto3, Miguel Oliveria kept his title hopes alive as he took victory, while championship leader Danny Kent was caught up in a multiple bike crash involving fellow title contender Enea Bastianini.
Efren Vazquez secured second spot with Brad Binder completing the podium in third.
Meanwhile, Aussie Remy Gardner claimed his best result of the season in 10th after charging from 28th on the grid.
Fellow Australians Olly Simpson finished 19th, while Matt Barton retired from the race.
Result: MotoGP Australian Grand Prix, Phillip Island
|1||Marc Márquez||Honda||27 Laps|
|7||Cal Crutchlow||LCR Honda||+9.375s|
|8||Pol Espargaró||Tech 3 Yamaha||+18.401s|
|10||Bradley Smith||Tech 3 Yamaha||+20.657s|
|11||Scott Redding||Marc VDS Honda||+21.846s|
|12||Danilo Petrucci||Pramac Ducati||+22.840s|
|14||Álvaro Bautista||Gresini Aprilia||+37.244s|
|15||Jack Miller||LCR Honda||+40.192s|
|16||Héctor Barberá||Avintia Ducati||+48.263s|
|17||Yonny Hernández||Pramac Ducati||+48.572s|
|18||Loris Baz||Forward Yamaha||+48.677s|
|19||Eugene Laverty||Aspar Honda||+50.201s|
|20||Mike Di Meglio||Avintia Ducati||+50.262s|
|21||Stefan Bradl||Gresini Aprilia||+50.277s|
|22||Toni Elías||Forward Yamaha||+1:20.942s|
|23||Anthony West||AB Honda||1:23.454|
|24||Mike Di Meglio||8|
|27||Alex de Angelis||2|