Jorge Lorenzo and Marc Marquez were crowd favorites in Sunday’s Jerez MotoGP because both of them belonged to Spain despite representing two different riding teams. Locals would have been happy to see any one of them winning the race. Lorenzo is not only the 2015 champion but also the winner at Jerez last year while Marquez won here in 2014. However, Italian veteran Valentino Rossi is not a nine-time world champion for nothing. The Movistar Yamaha rider produced a commanding performance and kept Lorenzo and Marquez in his wake to record his 87th premier class win. Rossi led from Pole to Flag on a day, when he was never seriously challenged. It was also the Italian’s first victory of the 2016 season though he is still 24 points adrift of championship leader Marquez and 7 points behind teammate Lorenzo.
ntino started racing in Grand Prix in 1996 for Aprilia in the 125cc category and won his first World Championship the following year.
When Valentino Rossi began his riding career in 1996 as a 125cc category rider, Marquez was just a 3-year old toddler. Now a man of many a season, the 37-year old Italian is arguably one of the most accomplished riders and the fact that he can still call the shots is proof of his tremendous riding capabilities. However, it has been 10 years since Rossi took the pole at Jerez. Rossi is not someone, who has many poles against his name with his last pole victory having come at the 2015 MotoGP event in Assen. At one time during Saturday’s qualifying, Marquez looked like snatching the pole from Rossi, but the Repsol Honda rider had a horrible run in the final sector and could only finish third behind Lorenzo, who took the second place. Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso was fourth ahead of the Suzuki duo of Maverick Vinales and Aleix Espargaro, Marquez’s teammate Dani Pedrosa was seventh, Tech 3 rider Pol Espargaro finished eighth, Avintia Racing’s Hector Barbera was ninth and LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow finished tenth.
On race day, Rossi shot off perfectly from his top spot on the grid and led Lorenzo and Marquez. On turn 9 of the second lap, Lorenzo came close and nudged ahead slightly but that was perhaps the only challenge Rossi faced on Sunday. After quickly regaining his lead position, Rossi pulled away from the rest of the riders and never looked back. For the first time in his career, Rossi led from start to finish despite suffering rear-wheel spins at higher speeds. His teammate Lorenzo also experienced the same problem as both of them used medium compound Michelin tyres. Both riders needed to reduce the pace at times to guard against any untoward incident. Regardless, Rossi was never challenged on the track as he finished with a win that logged his 113th Career GP victory. It was one of the most convincing MotoGP finish for the Italian, who had crashed out at Austin two weeks ago. Jorge Lorenzo, who also had to drop pace on account of the same rear-wheel spin as Rossi experienced, finished two seconds behind Rossi while Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez finished third. Marquez’s teammate Dani Pedrosa took the fourth spot ahead of the Suzuki pair of Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Vinales, Ducati’s Andrea Iannone was seventh, Monster Yamaha Tech 3 rider Pol Espargaro eighth, Aspar MotoGP Team’s Eugene Laverty ninth and Avintia Racing’s Hector Barbera finished tenth.