Lorenzo wins MotoGP finale in Valencia

Jorge Lorenzo

Jorge Lorenzo

Jorge Lorenzo has ended his Yamaha tenure with an emphatic victory in the Valencia season finale.

The pole-sitter led for all 30 laps while 2016 world champion Marc Marquez salvaged second after a poor start.

Andrea Iannone’s powerful Ducati took the Italian to third ahead of Valentino Rossi.

Lorenzo, who will join Ducati next year, led the field out of the first corner while Iannone made a demon start from the third row to file in behind #99 Yamaha.

Marquez, on the other hand, did the exact opposite in dropping from second to seventh.

The Repsol Honda rider ran fifth by the end of the opening lap, just behind fellow front row starter Rossi (Yamaha), leaving Lorenzo free to gap the field.

Rossi and Marquez passed Suzuki’s Maverick Viñales on Laps 5 and 6 respectively but faced a far more formidable task in overhauling Iannone.

Rossi overtook his compatriot on Lap 7 but the Yamaha was no match for the Ducati up the main straight.

The two Italians traded blows for several laps before Iannone had to then fend off Marquez, allowing Rossi a reprieve.

However, Iannone re-took second place again on Lap 17, before Marquez put Rossi out of the podium placings two laps later.

The Spaniard aggressively overtook Iannone on Lap 20 and then set after Lorenzo.

While Marquez made major inroads on the man he dethroned as world champion this year, Lorenzo had enough in his pocket to end his nine-year relationship with Yamaha on a high.

“I can relax, I can sleep deep because I had a perfect end with Yamaha,” said the 29 year old, who now joins Ducati after three world championships with the Japanese manufacturer.

“All these nine years, (it’s) very emotional.”

Viñales finished in fifth and Pol Espargaro (Tech 3 Yamaha) a distant sixth after passing a fading Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati) on the penultimate lap.

Dovizioso, Aleix Espargaro (Suzuki), Bradley Smith (Tech 3 Yamaha), and Alvaro Bautista (Gresini Aprilia) rounded out the top 10.

Jack Miller (LCR Honda) finished a mixed season with another championship point in 15th, while compatriot Remy Gardner was 18th in Moto2.

KTM’s premier class debut, ahead of a full campaign in 2017, ended in a mid-race retirement for test rider Mika Kallio with a technical issue.

Dani Pedrosa (Honda) and Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) both crashed out of contention.

Movistar Yamaha claimed the Teams’ Championship and Honda the Constructors’ Championship.

Riders will return to the Circuit Ricardo Tormo for two days of post-season testing from Tuesday, with the 2017 season proper starting in Qatar in late March.

Result: MotoGP Valencia Grand Prix

Pos. Rider Nation Team Bike Time/Gap
1 Jorge LORENZO SPA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 45’54.228
2 Marc MARQUEZ SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda +1.185
3 Andrea IANNONE ITA Ducati Team Ducati +6.603
4 Valentino ROSSI ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha +7.668
5 Maverick VIÑALES SPA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki +10.610
6 Pol ESPARGARO SPA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha +18.378
7 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA Ducati Team Ducati +18.417
8 Aleix ESPARGARO SPA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki +18.678
9 Bradley SMITH GBR Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha +25.993
10 Alvaro BAUTISTA SPA Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +35.065
11 Hector BARBERA SPA Avintia Racing Ducati +36.425
12 Danilo PETRUCCI ITA OCTO Pramac Yakhnich Ducati +42.415
13 Stefan BRADL GER Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +49.823
14 Scott REDDING GBR OCTO Pramac Yakhnich Ducati +52.035
15 Jack MILLER AUS Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Honda +55.625
16 Eugene LAVERTY IRL Pull & Bear Aspar Team Ducati +58.254
17 Tito RABAT SPA Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Honda +58.555
18 Loris BAZ FRA Avintia Racing Ducati +1’06.164
DNF Mika KALLIO FIN Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM 11 Laps
DNF Cal CRUTCHLOW GBR LCR Honda Honda 14 Laps
DNF Dani PEDROSA SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 24 Laps
DNF Yonny HERNANDEZ COL Pull & Bear Aspar Team Ducati 26 Laps

Championship Standings

Pos. Rider Nation Points
1 Marc MARQUEZ SPA 278
2 Valentino ROSSI ITA 236
3 Jorge LORENZO SPA 208
4 Maverick VIÑALES SPA 191
5 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA 162
6 Dani PEDROSA SPA 155
9 Hector BARBERA SPA 97
10 Andrea IANNONE ITA 96
12 Eugene LAVERTY IRL 77
13 Alvaro BAUTISTA SPA 76
14 Scott REDDING GBR 72
15 Danilo PETRUCCI ITA 71
16 Stefan BRADL GER 60
17 Jack MILLER AUS 56
18 Bradley SMITH GBR 55
19 Michele PIRRO ITA 36
20 Loris BAZ FRA 35
21 Tito RABAT SPA 29
23 Katsuyuki NAKASUGA JPN 5
24 Alex LOWES GBR 3
25 Hiroshi AOYAMA JPN 1
26 Nicky HAYDEN USA 1
27 Mike JONES AUS 1

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