Jorge Lorenzo delivered an inch-perfect performance to record his seventh victory of the MotoGP season in the Czech Grand Prix on Sunday.
The 23-year-old Spaniard now holds a 77-point lead over his nearest title rival Dani Pedrosa, who finished second. That means Lorenzo now holds an advantage of three entire race wins, with just eight rounds of the MotoGP world championship left to run.
With typical panache, Lorenzo forced his way into the lead with a brave move that saw him pass the fast-starting Pedrosa and Ben Spies at the same time into Turn 3. From that point on, he never looked back.
While that brief struggle saw Pedrosa slip behind Spies, it wasn't long before the Honda was back on the tail of Lorenzo. The Majorcan put up with this pursuit until around lap 10, before thumping in a series of flying laps that saw the gap extended by 4sec.
By lap 15 (of 22), the fight at the front was over, and Lorenzo was clear to take yet another dominant victory. He has still not finished lower than second this season, Germany's DNF not withstanding.
Casey Stoner eventually finished a distant third, having caught and passed Spies before half-distance. Behind that pair Valentino Rossi recover from a poor getaway to finish fifth, 18sec behind his teammate and third of the four Yamaha riders.
Rossi was assisted in this battle by Andrea Dovizioso crashing out of fifth on the second factory Honda. The Italian was annoyed at himself, having ended up prone in the middle of the track. He was lucky to have escaped unscathed as the field swept left and right of him.
Nicky Hayden rode bravely to sixth, despite having chipped his left radius bone less than 24 hours prior to the race, though the Ducati man had no chance of hanging on to Rossi.
Colin Edwards finished a lonely seventh ahead of Marco Melandri who came out on top of an enthralling battle between himself, Hector Barbera and MM's Gresini teammate Marco Simoncelli in the final laps. In fact, such was the intensity of the scrap, that even the hobbled Randy de Puniet got involved – stealing 10th from Simoncelli in the process.
There was misfortune for Suzuki with both Loris Capirossi and the injured Alvaro Bautista crashing out. The Spaniard fell on the last lap, having grimaced throughout with a back injury picked up in practice.
Pos Rider Team Time/Gap
1. Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 43m22.638s
2. Dani Pedrosa Honda + 5.494s
3. Casey Stoner Ducati + 11.426s
4. Ben Spies Tech 3 Yamaha + 13.723s
5. Valentino Rossi Yamaha + 17.930s
6. Nicky Hayden Ducati + 26.815s
7. Colin Edwards Tech 3 Yamaha + 33.396s
8. Marco Melandri Gresini Honda + 39.406s
9. Hector Barbera Aspar Ducati + 39.639s
10. Randy de Puniet LCR Honda + 40.893s
11. Marco Simoncelli Gresini Honda + 42.032s
12. Aleix Espargaro Pramac Ducati + 47.091s
Alvaro Bautista Suzuki 21 laps
Mika Kallio Pramac Ducati 7 laps
Andrea Dovizioso Honda 6 laps
Loris Capirossi Suzuki 1 lap