Lorenzo pips Marquez in Mugello thriller

Jorge Lorenzo

Jorge Lorenzo

Jorge Lorenzo pipped Marc Marquez to win the Italian Grand Prix by the narrowest of margins as Valentino Rossi’s challenge ended with an engine failure.

The lead changed four times on the final lap as Lorenzo overtook Marquez on the final straight to take victory by 0.019s.

Ducati’s Andrea Iannone edged Honda’s Dani Pedrosa to complete the podium.

Both Movistar Yamahas started strongly but it was Lorenzo who led out of the opening corner despite starting from the second row.

Rossi made several advances to pass Lorenzo during the opening third of the 23-lap race, but the Spaniard was unmoveable under brakes at Turn 1.

Drama struck moments later as Rossi’s race literally went up in smoke on Lap 9 when his bike blew an engine. Lorenzo had suffered a similar issue during the morning warm up.

Marquez took up the slack and the Repsol Honda rider twice went underneath Lorenzo but could not complete the pass.

A final lap move put the Honda man in the box seat for victory as he exited the last corner in the lead.

However, the Yamaha’s superior acceleration was pivotal as Lorenzo took advantage of a slight wheelie from Marquez to record his third race win of the season.

“When he passed me I thought about staying in second place and taking the points,” explained Lorenzo.

“But I remembered the year 2005 when I was in the 250cc when I passed de Angelis in the last chicane for second place and I thought maybe I could do the same.

“I tried a crazy move and finally my bike was quite fast so I took the slipstream and won this unexpected victory.”

Marquez was pleased with his efforts but admitted that his Honda team has work to do.

“I tried my maximum, I took a lot of risks to win this race but in the last straight Jorge overtook me without lifting,” he said.

“We must still work on acceleration so for the next race we will try to take another step.”

Iannone salvaged third after a shocking start saw him drop from third on the grid to as low as 11th position.

Pedrosa finished fourth on his Repsol Honda after running third late in the race, while Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso was fifth.

Maverick Viñales finished sixth, having emerged from the start in 11th on his Suzuki Ecstar despite qualifying second.

Jack Miller (Marc VDS Honda) failed to finish after being caught up in an opening corner incident involving Alvaro Bautista (Gresini Aprilia) and Loris Baz (Avintia Ducati).

Lorenzo’s victory doubles his championship lead to 10 points over Marquez, while Rossi is a further 37 points adrift after his second DNF of the season.

The championship now returns to Spain for the Round 7, the Catalan Grand Prix from June 3-5.

Result: MotoGP Italian Grand Prix

Position Rider Bike Laps Gap
1 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 23
2 Marc Marquez Honda 23 +0.019s
3 Andrea Iannone Ducati 23 +4.742s
4 Dani Pedrosa Honda 23 +4.910s
5 Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 23 +6.256s
6 Maverick Vinales Suzuki 23 +8.670s
7 Bradley Smith Yamaha 23 +13.340s
8 Danilo Petrucci Ducati 23 +14.598s
9 Aleix Espargaro Suzuki 23 +18.643s
10 Michele Pirro Ducati 23 +22.298s
11 Cal Crutchlow Honda 23 +27.936s
12 Hector Barbera Ducati 23 +35.712s
13 Eugene Laverty Ducati 23 +38.032s
14 Stefan Bradl Aprilia 23 +40.094s
15 Pol Espargaro Yamaha 23 +59.811s
16 Yonny Hernandez Ducati 23 +1:04.397s
DNF Valentino Rossi Yamaha 8 Retirement
DNF Scott Redding Ducati 8 Retirement
DNF Tito Rabat Honda 0 Withdrawn
DNF Loris Baz Ducati 0 Retirement
DNF Alvaro Bautista Aprilia 0 Retirement
DNF Jack Miller

Championship Standings

Position Rider Points
1 Jorge Lorenzo 115
2 Marc Marquez 105
3 Valentino Rossi 78
4 Dani Pedrosa 66
5 Maverick Vinales 59
6 Aleix Espargaro 49
7 Pol Espargaro 48
8 Hector Barbera 43
9 Andrea Iannone 41
10 Eugene Laverty 36
11 Andrea Dovizioso 34
12 Bradley Smith 29
13 Stefan Bradl 25
14 Alvaro Bautista 21
15 Michele Pirro 18
16 Danilo Petrucci 17
17 Scott Redding 16
18 Tito Rabat 11
19 Cal Crutchlow 10
20 Loris Baz 8
21 Yonny Hernandez 3
22 Jack Miller 2

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