MotoGP Grand Prix of Catalunya 2016 Results: Winner, Standings and Reaction
Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi recovered from eighth position to win a gripping MotoGP Catalunya Grand Prix on Sunday.
The seven-time MotoGP world champion held off Honda’s persistent Marc Marquez to take the chequered flag, with another Honda man Dani Pedrosa grabbing third spot. It was a day to forget for Rossi’s team-mate Jorge Lorenzo, as he was taken out by Andrea Iannone late on and was unable to finish.
The result means Lorenzo now only has a 12-point gap in front of his team-mate in the race for the world title; Marquez now leads the battle for the championship by 10 points from Lorenzo.
Here is a look the results from a fine day’s racing in Montmelo, how the standings have changed and a closer examination of the best bits of the action.
This is a circuit where Lorenzo has thrived in the past, having won in three of the last four years, so it was no surprise to see him get off to a good start. Indeed, Marquez had no answer for the Yamaha man, as he produced a superb move to overtake him into the opening corner.
Meanwhile, Rossi slipped back off the line and down to eighth position at one stage. Although the experienced Italian went about pulling himself back into the race in spectacular style.
The Yamaha man found his groove, scything through the field in style. Rossi produced a lap record as he moved up into the top three, weaving his way past a clutch of riders to within touching distance of the top two; once there it didn’t take him long to edge past both Marquez and his team-mate into first position.
Here is a look at the overtake that saw him move into first spot:
Lorenzo seemed stunned by Rossi’s efforts and that allowed Marquez to jump him with a fine overtake into second. The reigning world champion even slipped down as far as fourth, with Pedrosa’s Honda also proving too good for the Yamaha man, who was evidently struggling.
Up front, Rossi was staving off the challenge of the other Honda rider. Marquez had settled well by this stage and was putting pressure on the Italian at every turn. But all the years of experience the Yamaha rider had under his belt were shining through, as he kept the youngster at bay.
The GPxtra Twitter feed felt as though the Spaniard was biding his time in an attempt to take the lead of the race:
Lorenzo was falling further and further back, though, and after such a scintillating start to the day, his Catalunya Grand Prix was to end in disappointment.
The champion could do little about the incident that prematurely brought an end to his race, as Iannone inexplicably collided with the Yamaha and took out both riders. While they were each in good condition following the crash, Lorenzo was unhappy, as the Moto Race Feed noted:
That elimination meant all eyes were firmly fixed on the front two riders, who had built up a buffer between themselves and Pedrosa in third. And with the laps ticking down Marquez launched his bid for the race win.
With five laps to go he edged in front, before Rossi snatched the lead back. Then again, with three laps to run, Marquez found himself in the lead before the 37-year-old somehow hauled his way back to the front of the field on the penultimate lap.
The pressure of the chase eventually seemed to get to the younger man, though, as he ran wide before the final lap, allowing Rossi to grab his second win of the season.
Here is a look at the moment the winner crossed the line:
This was a spectacular performance from Rossi, showcasing all the attributes that make him one of the all-time greats. He recovered superbly after falling behind early on.
The challenge now will be to produce these standards on a more consistent basis, starting with the next Grand Prix in the Netherlands in three weeks’ time.