Jorge Lorenzo did all he could today with a victory at the GP Generali de la Comunitat Valenciana at the final round of the 2013 MotoGP Championship with the Yamaha Factory Racing rider leading the race from start to finish in an heroic performance to take the win ahead of Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa and teammate Marc Marquez. However, with Lorenzo needing to win the race and Marquez to finish in 5th place or lower the championship went to the rookie with Lorenzo gracious in defeat.

I thought that today it was better to concentrate on winning the race

Jorge Lorenzo

Lorenzo grabbed the holeshot into turn one and the scene was set for a scintillating 30-lap race that saw multiple passing at the front. The passes at the front was not, however between Lorenzo and Marquez but among the 2012 champion and Pedrosa who was determined to take the race lead and aid his younger teammate’s challenge for the title. The Spanish crowd was treated to an epic struggle between Lorenzo and Pedrosa who swapped the lead at least six to seen times in the first 10 laps of the race.

Marquez was happy to sit in third place and watch Lorenzo lead the way knowing that all he had to do was stay within the top four. Riding closely behind Marquez was the second Yamaha Factory Racing machine in the hands of Valentino Rossi and Alvaro Bautista on the GO&Fun Honda Gresini machine while the familiar colors of LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl was in close battle with Monster Yamaha Tech 3 riders Bradley Smith and Cal Crutchlow. Meanwhile, the battle for the best CRT machine was being led by the familiar sight of Aleix Espargaro on board the Power Electronics Aspar machine.

Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda Team
Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda Team

Photo by: Repsol Media

The pivotal moment in the race came early at the start of the second third of the race when Pedrosa pushed his way under Lorenzo but within two corners the Yamaha rider was back underneath his Honda rival and both riders ran wide with Pedrosa dropping back to 5th and Lorenzo losing the lead to Marquez. This led to Lorenzo moving to another strategy of ridding a fast as he could and within half a lap he was back in front of Marquez and began to pull away and build a lead. There was bad luck for Crutchlow at the start of the second third of the race when he crashed and had to retire.

The fight for the final podium position was the main battle in the middle part of the race with Bautista and Rossi fighting it out with Rossi eventually getting the best of his younger rival but Pedrosa wasn’t going to stay in 5th for long and within a couple of laps he had also passed Bautista and was lining Rossi up for a pass with the front two riders now with a comfortable gap over the rest of the field. Pedrosa continued to push to the limit to catch Rossi and after doing so he then set out in trying to reduce the gap to Marquez who was now happy to sit in 2nd and grab his first MotoGP title.

The last third of the race saw Lorenzo out on his own at the front while Marquez was being caught by his teammate but with a podium finish still good enough to give him the championship, he didn’t fight back when Pedrosa moved past him into 2nd position and happy to cross the line in formation behind Lorenzo who had to give best to Marquez in the end but in the best way possible. The fans were then treated to a spectacle of celebration with Lorenzo celebrating his 8th win of this year and Marquez his first ever MotoGP title.

Lorenzo was happy to win the race and paid tribute to Marquez. He said, “I slowed the start of the race a little but I think it didn't work out because the other riders, Bautista, Valentino, Crutchlow and the others needed some tenths more to stay there. I tried first and last to play a little bit with the race and I managed it quite well but I couldn't stay there for too long. When I looked behind I could see that Valentino was very far away so I thought that today it was better to concentrate on winning the race and waiting to see if Marc makes a mistake. Now we have to celebrate second in the standings, which is a good place. We have to congratulate Marc because he really deserved the championship and we will make a party tonight!”

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team
Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team

Photo by: Repsol Media

Pedrosa was happy with second place after dropping back early on in the race and he was quick to congratulate his teammate saying, “The race was difficult at the start because of the overtaking moves between myself and Jorge. However, we fought to the limit until I was taken a little off the track and lost ground as a result. Above all, I want to congratulate Marc today. He has done an excellent job this season and had a great campaign. We should take our hats off to him because he has achieved something historic; to win the MotoGP title as a rookie is incredible.”

Newly-crowned MotoGP Champion Marquez was thrilled when speaking after the race. He said, “It was a really long race, maybe the longest of my career! At the start I was very nervous, I know I said I wasn’t but if I’m honest I really was. Jorge had a very good start, as usual, and I wasn’t sure which tactic to take. I followed Jorge and Dani and began to settle into the race. Then towards the end, I decided not to push as I knew my position was secure and safe to take the Championship.

It has been a fantastic year, I am still in a dream! I really didn’t expect this at the beginning and I am really so very happy. So thank you to all my team, my family and of course Honda and all our sponsors. The support from everyone and all my fans around the World has been incredible and I dedicate this Championship to you all!” Marquez added.