Dani Pedrosa swept to his first win of the 2017 MotoGP season at Jerez in Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix, heading up a one-two finish for Repsol Honda.
Pedrosa picked up pole position on Saturday before going lights-to-flag in the race, ultimately finishing six seconds clear of teammate and compatriot Marc Marquez as Spanish riders locked out the podium.
Pedrosa’s path to victory was fairly straightforward, but Marquez came under pressure for second early on as Moto2 world champion Johann Zarco zipped through the pack on his Tech3 Yamaha bike.
Zarco passed Marquez for second on lap four, only for the three-time MotoGP champion to battle back and eventually pull clear, dropping his rival into the clutches on the oncoming Jorge Lorenzo.
With good results yet to arrive since joining Ducati at the start of the year, Lorenzo looked more comfortable through the race in Jerez as he battled from eighth on the grid to finish third, marking his first podium for the team. The Spaniard passed Zarco for P3 before half-distance, with the Frenchman hanging on to finish fourth.
It proved to be a race to forget for Yamaha riders Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi as high temperatures in Spain hampered their tire management. Viñales was able to finish sixth, while Rossi ailed home 10th, but remains in the lead of the riders’ championship.
The MotoGP paddock reconvenes in two weeks’ time with the French Grand Prix at Le Mans.