Jorge Lorenzo has closed to within nine points of the MotoGP championship lead after completely dominating the Italian Grand Prix at Mugello. The Spaniard hit the front on the opening lap and was never threatened from there while Andrea Iannone rode the race of his life to take second, just ahead of championship leader Valentino Rossi.
All eyes were on Iannone at the start and the first-time polesitter appeared in danger of incurring the wrath of race direction when his Ducati creeped forward moments before the lights changed. Fortunately for Iannone, he wasn’t deemed to have gained an advantage and it was easy to see why, with Lorenzo and Andrea Dovizioso relegating him to third.
Rossi was languishing back in eleventh after a dreadful opening lap and the Yamaha man had fallen behind defending champion Marc Marquez who had produced some daring overtaking moves to climb from thirteenth to fourth. He soon stormed past Iannone into third before another piece of late braking saw him deprive Dovizioso of second on lap ten. Unfortunately for Marc, Lorenzo was five seconds up the road and in a league of his own, forcing him to concentrate on securing P2.
His cause was helped on lap fourteen as Dovizioso peeled off into the pits with a rear sprocket problem, compounding a disastrous day for the Italian who had crashed on his out lap in morning warm-up. Iannone continued to fly the flag for Bologna though and breezed back past Marquez on the run towards San Donato but the battle was finally settled on lap eighteen when the front-end problems of the Honda RC213V struck again, causing Marquez to crash out at Poggio Secco.
Atmosphere in the grandstands was already building before Marquez’s exit with Valentino Rossi making rapid progress through the field. After making short work of the battling British duo, Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith, Rossi chased down the Ducati-Honda squabble over second and began to pick his rivals off, starting with Dani Pedrosa on lap thirteen. Marquez’s demise promoted him to fourth on lap eighteen and within a couple of corners, ‘The Doctor’ sent his compatriots wild with a magnificent move on Pedrosa for third at Savelli. Iannone was just out of reach, forcing Rossi to settle for third, while Pedrosa salvaged fourth for Repsol Honda.
The Battle of the Brits looked set to be going Crutchlow’s way until a crash at Arrabbiata three laps from home. As a result, Smith inherited fifth ahead of his Tech 3 teammate Pol Espargaro while Maverick Vinales brought his Suzuki home in a superb seventh. Michele Pirro scored points on his wildcard outing in eighth with Pramac pair Danilo Petrucci and Yonny Hernandez rounding out the top ten.
2015 GRAN PREMIO D’ITALIA TIM – RACE RESULT (23 LAPS)
|1||99. Jorge Lorenzo||Yamaha||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||41:39.173|
|2||29. Andrea Iannone||Ducati||Ducati Team||+5.563|
|3||46. Valentino Rossi||Yamaha||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||+6.661|
|4||26. Dani Pedrosa||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||+9.978|
|5||38. Bradley Smith||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||+15.284|
|6||44. Pol Espargaro||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||+15.665|
|7||25. Maverick Vinales||Suzuki||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||+23.805|
|8||51. Michele Pirro||Ducati||Ducati Team||+29.152|
|9||9. Danilo Petrucci||Ducati||Pramac Racing||+32.008|
|10||68. Yonny Hernandez||Ducati||Pramac Racing||+34.571|
|11||45. Scott Redding||Honda||Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS||+38.553|
|12||76. Loris Baz||Yamaha Forward||Athina Forward Racing||+42.158|
|13||8. Hector Barbera||Ducati||Avintia Racing||+44.801|
|14||19. Alvaro Bautista||Aprilia||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||+50.435|
|15||50. Eugene Laverty||Honda||Aspar MotoGP Team||+53.060|
|16||63. Mike Di Meglio||Ducati||Avintia Racing||+1:15.265|
|17||17. Karel Abraham||Honda||AB Motoracing||+1:15.381|
|18||33. Marco Melandri||Aprilia||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||+1:41.840|
|NC||35. Cal Crutchlow||Honda||CWM LCR Honda||+3 Laps|
|NC||93. Marc Marquez||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||+6 Laps|
|NC||4. Andrea Dovizioso||Ducati||Ducati Team||+10 Laps|
|NC||6. Stefan Bradl||Yamaha Forward||Athina Forward Racing||+20 Laps|
|NC||69. Nicky Hayden||Honda||Aspar MotoGP Team||+20 Laps|
|NC||41. Aleix Espargaro||Suzuki||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||+21 Laps|
|NC||43. Jack Miller||Honda||CWM LCR Honda||+21 Laps|
|NC||15. Alex de Angelis||ART||Octo IodaRacing Team||+21 Laps|