Vinales dominates at Silverstone for maiden MotoGP win

© AP, 4 September 2016
AP Photo/Rui Vieira

Maverick Vinales celebrated the first victory of his MotoGP career at the British Grand Prix on Sunday, giving Suzuki its first success since 2007.

The 21-year-old Spaniard finished more than three seconds clear of British pole-sitter Cal Crutchlow of Honda to become the seventh different winner in the championship.

"It feels incredible, for what I've fought for all the time to come true," said Vinales, who is fourth in the drivers' standings. "The key was yesterday in the rain because they gave me a bike to be able to be on the front row. Today, we did it."

Six-time MotoGP champion Valentino Rossi on a Yamaha completed the podium in the 12th race of the season at Silverstone in central England.

Marc Marquez was fourth on a Honda and remains the championship leader, 50 points ahead of Rossi.

The race began with a dramatic first lap as Loris Baz (Avintia) and Pol Espargaro (Yamaha) were involved in an incident, prompting the red flag with the two riders needing medical attention.

Following the restart, Crutchlow battled past Rossi and Vinales to lead. But Vinales responded to regain first place before easing away, leaving a five-bike race for runners-up spot between Marquez, Rossi, Crutchlow, Andrea Iannone and Dani Pedrosa.

With Iannone losing his Ducati with six laps to go when second, Crutchlow was able to edge ahead of Rossi and Marquez to finish behind the victorious Vinales.

"I had to take a lot of risks because we got the tyre choice wrong and I immediately realized we'd made a mistake," Marquez said. "We chose the soft front tyre because that's what we thought was the best before the race.

"I tried to follow Valentino, who was my main concern in the championship, and then tried to attack him at the end because I'd looked after my tyres really well."

 

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