Lorenzo controls for opening race victory

Published: 20 March 2016

Jorge Lorenzo has controlled the opening race of the 2016 MotoGP season in style, chipping away at his opposition in relentless fashion to take the win from Andrea Dovizioso and Marc Marquez.

Dovizioso and his teammate Andrea Iannone were the early leaders, but Iannone falling from the battle between the pair was the start of the end for their hold on the race, with a series of fast laps from Lorenzo able to close down the remaining Italian, pass him, and clear off into the distance.

From there, Dovizioso was left to scrap for second with Marc Marquez and Valentino Rossi, who were able to make the break with the pack but never threatened Lorenzo.

Dani Pedrosa and Maverick Viñales were a distant fifth and sixth, ahead of a battle between Tech 3 Yamaha teammates Pol Espargaro and Bradley Smith that was separated by only 0.023 in favour of the Spaniard at the line.

Hector Barbera was an impressive ninth, taking his GP14.2 Ducati ahead of the GP15 of Scott Redding. Aleix Espargaró was eleventh on the second factory Suzuki.

Eugene Laverty was able to capitalise on his breakthrough on the Aspar Ducati to finish twelfth after a race-long battle with Alvaro Bautista and Jack Miller, while Tito Rabat was the final finisher in fifteenth.

Yonny Hernandez was the fist casualty of the race after retiring early on, while Cal Crutchlow, Stefan Bradl and Loris Baz joined Iannone as fallers.