Full report and results below:
Reigning MotoGP world champion Jorge Lorenzo has put on a masterful and experienced performance to take his seventh victory of the season under blazing sunshine at the Japanese Grand Prix in Motegi. He has kept his title fight alive and reduced Marc Marquez's points lead to thirteen heading into the now mouthwatering final race at Valencia. Lorenzo led from the first corner and was never headed in a race that saw a real dearth of passing maneuvers, he came under a brief spell of pressure from title leader Marc Marquez in the middle stages but the rookie appeared to suffer major tyre problems in the closing laps, running wide and out-braking himself familiarly on several occasions.
In the end Marquez settled for second place crossing the line three seconds behind Lorenzo and a second and a half ahead of his disappointing Repsol Honda team mate Dani Pedrosa. Alvaro Bautista and Stefan Bradl made it four Hondas in the top five, underlining the impressive performance of the victor Lorenzo at a track that clearly favored the RC213V. Valentino Rossi took sixth place after squandering a fantastic start which saw him running in second place alongside his team mate in the early laps, Rossi then ran wide and off the track at the ninety degree corner on lap four and dropped as low as twelfth place, in the end a sixth place finish was a decent recovery.
Monster Tech 3 riders Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith had an interesting intra-team battle and finished in seventh and eighth places respectively as the Ducati duo of Nicky Hayden and Andrea Dovizioso rounded out the top ten at the conclusion of a race that was something of an anti-climax, given the spectacle provided by the two races that preceded it.
The race saw crashes for Lukas Pesek, Luca Scassa and a particularly scary incident for CRT title winner Aleix Espargaro who was forced to bail off his bike at the ninety degree corner, which is approached at some 300km/h. It appeared that he may have had some sort of brake failure or something similar, all riders were thankfully uninjured.
|12||5||Colin EDWARDS||FTR Kawasaki||+1'03.213|
|13||14||Randy DE PUNIET||ART||+1'06.840|
|20||71||Claudio CORTI||FTR Kawasaki||1 Lap|
|21||50||Damian CUDLIN||PBM||1 Lap|
|22||67||Bryan STARING||FTR Honda||1 Lap|
|41||Aleix ESPARGARO||ART||12 Laps|
|23||Luca SCASSA||ART||23 Laps|
|52||Lukas PESEK||Ioda-Suter||23 Laps|