JEREZ DE LA FRONTERA, Spain, May 7 – Honda’s Dani Pedrosa led from pole to flag to claim a dominant victory at the Spanish Moto GP on Sunday ahead of Marc Marquez as Spanish riders cleaned up at Jerez.
Pedrosa clocked 45min 26.827sec for his first win on Spanish soil since he won on the same track in 2013. It was the 31-year-old’s 30th MotoGP win.
“It was an extremely hard race to be calm. I wanted to go faster but maybe the track condition was not there,” said Pedrosa.
“I wasn’t really riding very comfortably so I had to be very concentrated. In the end I was able to control my pace and manage my lap times.”
Fellow Honda rider Marquez pushed hard throughout the 27 laps around the sun-kissed circuit, but had to settle with second, at 6.1sec. Jorge Lorenzo, on a Ducati, rounded out the podium to make it an all-Spanish top three.
“Honestly I was pushing and trying to stay with him,” said Marquez, whose younger brother Alex won the Moto2 earlier in the day.
“Second place was a really good position here.”
Lorenzo dubbed his third place “like a victory”. “I’m very proud, very happy… It’s such a difficult bike.”
Championship leader Valentino Rossi, seeking a 10th world title, could only manage 10th position, more than 38sec off Pedrosa’s winning pace.
But the Italian, with 62 points, kept his place atop the standings, two ahead of Yamaha teammate Maverick Vinales, with Marquez (58) in third and Pedrosa fourth (52).
Alex Marquez, riding a Kalex, made the most of a fall by championship leader Franco Morbidelli to notch up his first win in the Moto2 category.
The Spaniard timed 43min 24.350sec, finishing more than 3sec ahead of Italian Francesco Bagnaia, also on a Kalex, with Portugal’s Miguel Oliveira (KTM) completing the podium.
And another Spanish rider, Aron Canet, left it late to secure his maiden victory in the Moto3 race.
Canet, riding a Honda, soared into the lead on the final turn to take the chequered flag in 41min 25.706sec and finish a whisker ahead of Italian Romano Fenati, with Spaniard Joan Mir in third.