Austin MotoGP: Marquez leads Vinales in warm-up

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MotoGP bad boy Marc Marquez was back to his dominant best this weekend, winning the Grand Prix of the Americas easily.

After making a clean getaway with clear track ahead, Marquez was untouchable for the remainder of the race, as the Honda rider dominated his favourite left-handed circuit. Iannone stood on the last step of the podium and it was a special performance for the Italian rider as it was his first podium finish for Suzuki after joining them a year ago.

Vinales managed to pass Iannone despite some resistance but the latter was safe from Rossi.

Australian racer Jack Miller finished in 9 position, after a suffering setbacks with his Ducati.

Vinales was confident he could challenge Marquez in the race even before the penalty was announced.

Rossi was a distant fourth in the end, while Dovizioso got the better of Tech3's Johann Zarco in the closing stages to take fifth and a slender one-point lead in the standings ahead of Marquez. Eventually, Marquez' superior Honda passed Iannone's Suzuki for the lead. Marquez was the fastest rider throughout the weekend and a sixth consecutive premiere class pole position at COTA looked inevitable.

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The Caps' captain scored the 50th and 51st playoff goals of his career in the middle frame to put the visitors in command, 3-1. Momentum was shifting to the home team, but Ovechkin would soon quiet the sellout crowd of 18,637 at Nationwide Arena .

Spain's Maverick Vinales, who placed second in qualifying, came across a slower-moving Marquez on the first fast lap of his second run and Vinales was forced to abandon his lap, causing the violation.

Iannone tried to keep pace with the world champion but began to slip back as Marquez edged ahead by just over a second.

"I have learned (from it) and if I had to repeat the race I would try not to make the mistakes again".

Dani Pedrosa salvaged seventh place on the second works Honda in a race he was unsure he would complete, owing to the pain from his broken wrist.

Marquez, a four times world champion, has yet to win this season but will still fancy his chances from fourth place at a favourite track. The penalty was a result of blocking Pol Espargaro during qualifying. It was mostly status quo for the rest of the race apart from a few fallers including championship leader Cal Crutchlow.