Jorge Lorenzo photo courtesy BridgestoneEnlarge Photo
After starting second on a clean, clear but green track after rain washed the circuit, the Yamaha Factory Racing rider bided his time, allowing Pedrosa's Repsol Honda and teammate Ben Spies to get ahead of him at the start, even as pole man Stoner's Honda fell back to fourth.
Keeping his hard front and medium rear Bridgestone tires from degrading, Lorenzo battled with fellow Spaniard Pedrosa until six laps from the end of the race when he opened the throttle, passing Pedrosa and pulling out 5.003 seconds from his rival.
Spies' error and subsequent fall (he later rejoined) opened the door for Andrea Dovizioso on the Yamaha Tech3 satellite bike, giving him third place ahead of Stoner.
Cal Cruchlow, who started third finished fifth while Alvaro Bautista recovered from his difficult qualifying session to take sixth place. Valentino Rossi rode to seventh on the Ducati Team bike, with Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda), Nicky Hayden's Ducati and Spies rounding out the top 10. Spaniard Aleix Espargaro brought the Power Electronics Aspar home 13th and first in the CRT class.
"I'm really happy with this victory as it was a very tough weekend. We performed a lot better than yesterday," Lorenzo explained. "As in qualifying it was very hot. The grip on the track after the rain this morning was also not so great. I followed Dani and watched him and when he slowed his pace and eventually made a mistake, I was able to pass him then give it full throttle. Thank you so much to Yamaha and my team for working hard to make a great bike for today's victory."
Aleix Espargaro - MotoGP photoEnlarge Photo
After riding for Repsol Honda last year, Dovizioso scored his first Yamaha podium today, the Italian rider showing his skill and determination in the 25-lap contest. "This is a fantastic reward for all the effort my crew has put in since I came to this team," Dovi said. "It is great to be battling at the front on a satellite machine and I'm sure nobody expected us to be doing this so early."
With his victory, Lorenzo has 115 points to fourth-finishing Stoner's 95, while Pedrosa lies third with 85 and Dovizioso is fourth with 80 points. Crutchlow (56), Rossi (51), Bautista (45), Bradl (43), Hayden (40) and Hector Barbera with Pramac Racing Team (Ducati) completes with top 10 with 31 points.
The next race for the MotoGP troops is at Silverstone in England, but everyone will remain at the Catalunya track for testing on Monday, all hoping for clear weather this time around.