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Dovizioso, Ducati take memorable home MotoGP win at Mugello

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Andrea Dovizioso led Ducati to its first home MotoGP victory in eight years on Sunday with a controlled display in the Italian Grand Prix at Mugello.

On a day that saw Italian riders take victories in all three world championship classes, Dovizioso charged from third on the grid to score Ducati’s first win of the season, breaking Yamaha and Honda’s dominance.

Dovizioso made a slow start, dropping back to fifth by the end of the second lap as old rivals Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo battled for position at the front.

World championship leader Maverick Viñales managed to pick off Lorenzo and Yamaha teammate Rossi to take the lead by the end of Lap 4, with Dovizioso following him through.

Dovizioso managed to hit the front 10 laps later, slipping past Viñales and leaving the Spaniard in the clutches of Danilo Petrucci, who had charged all the way from ninth on the grid to find himself embroiled in the battle for second.

While Dovizioso was able to finish a second clear of the field to claim his third MotoGP win, Viñales held on to P2 to extend his championship lead, leaving Petrucci third.

Despite riding with injuries sustained in a motocross accident last week, Rossi took fourth place for Yamaha ahead of Alvaro Bautista, who was fifth and the third-fastest Ducati.

Honda’s Marc Marquez was sixth ahead of Tech3’s Johann Zarco and Lorenzo, who faded after his early charge, eventually finishing eighth. Michele Pirro and Andrea Iannone rounded out the top 10 positions at Mugello.

Ferrari teammates Vettel and Raikkonen fastest in rainy final practice at Australian GP

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MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Ferrari drivers Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen went one-two in the final practice session ahead of qualifying at the water-logged Australian Grand Prix on Saturday.

Vettel set a best-lap time of 1 minute, 26.067 seconds, more than 2.4 seconds faster than his teammate in second.

Both Ferrari drivers switched from their intermediate tires to the super-fast, ultra-soft tires for the final few laps of the session, testing conditions on the track after a day-long downpour left it slick and filled with small puddles.

Mercedes drivers Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton did not opt to try out their soft tires, sticking to the intermediates for the entire session. They had the seventh- and eighth-fastest times, after topping the leaderboard in practice in dry conditions on Friday.

The heavy rains subsided by early afternoon, allowing the track to rapidly dry during the third practice session and making conditions safe for drivers to test their soft tires.

Still, only a few drivers completed a timed lap with the softer compounds, with Mercedes, Red Bull and most of the others staying with their intermediates.

Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson had the third-fastest time of the session on ultrasoft tires, followed by Red Bull’s Max Verstappen on intermediates.

Hamilton remains the favorite to capture his fifth straight pole position at the Australian Grand Prix in qualifying later Saturday. He had the fastest laps on ultrasoft tires in the two practice sessions on Friday, though Verstappen was right behind him.

Verstappen and Vettel both slid on the slick track early in the third practice session, but maintained control and completed their runs without incident.

Verstappen’s teammate, Daniel Ricciardo, had the sixth-fastest time of the session. The Australian’s chances of winning his fifth career Grand Prix on his home track in Melbourne took a hit late Friday when he was assessed a three-place grid penalty for Sunday’s race.

The Australian driver was penalized for driving too fast under red-flag conditions during Friday’s second practice session because of debris on the track.