Jorge Lorenzo took centre place on the podium in his final ride for Yamaha after 9 years with the factory team. Lorenzo who started on pole position led the way throughout the race with very little competition to trouble his superior ride. Only in the closing laps did Marc Marquez look like he might be closing in on Lorenzo as Lorenzo’s tyres degraded , but it was too little too late for the reigning Champion to do anything but come in 2nd place.
Lorenzo slayed track records right from the opening laps, with his fastest being 1:31.171.
Behind Lorenzo, Rossi had an epic battle with Andrea Iannone, the Ducati rider was taking no prisoners and made sure he kept Rossi fighting, swapping places throughout the race. Iannone eventually made it to P3 knocking Rossi back into 4th place.
Last round’s winner Cal Crutchlow crashed out of the race as did Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa who had only just returned to the paddock after suffering multiple injuries, including a fractured collarbone that had required surgery, after a crash at the Japanese GP last month.
Jorge Lorenzo who moves to Ducati in 2017 has had a total of 43 wins and 3 World Championship titles with Yamaha. In a letter released by Lorenzo this week he thanked the team and the engineers for always giving him a winning bike. Maverick Vinales now join’s Valentino Rossi at Yamaha after a successful two years with Suzuki.
Allison Remzi Header Photo ©Andy Fitzpatrick