MOTORCYCLING

A maverick result: 21-year-old Spaniard Vinales wins maiden race in British MotoGP at Silverstone

Spaniard Maverick Vinales turns in a masterful ride to secure his first ever victory at the top level of motorcycle racing

PUBLISHED : Monday, 05 September, 2016, 12:42am
UPDATED : Monday, 05 September, 2016, 9:56am

Spaniard Maverick Vinales rode a masterful race to secure his first ever MotoGP victory, easing to take the chequered flag in the British Grand Prix at Silverstone on Sunday.

The 21-year-old – the 2013 Moto3 world champion – gave Suzuki its first win in the British edition in this category since American Kevin Schwantz in 1994.

It was their first in the category overall since Chris Vermeulen triumphed in France in 2007.

Vinales led home Honda’s Cal Crutchlow – the first Briton since Barry Sheene in 1977 to take pole – with legendary Italian Valentino Rossi third on his Yamaha for his 217th podium placing.

Rossi marginally reduced Marc Marquez’s lead in the overall standings, the Spaniard holding a 50-point advantage over the Italian, 210 points to 160. Marquez finished fourth.

Vinales, winning his 17th grands prix in all categories, said he had felt all weekend something special was on the cards.

“This is a dream come true, one I thought was possible this weekend,” said Vinales, whose win makes it seven different winners of the last seven MotoGPs.

“I hope I can deliver more dreams to Suzuki in the future as the team has worked so hard.”

Winning in the rain: Great Britain's Cal Crutchlow claims historic win in weather-hit Czech Republic MotoGP in Brno

Crutchlow, whose win in the Czech MotoGP last time out was the first by a British rider since Sheene in 1981 in the top category, said he couldn’t have wished for more.

“To take pole and finish second is more than I could have dreamt of. I thought I would finish in the top six at best,” confessed the 30-year-old.

“I am really happy I could satisfy the home crowd as they have supported me through thick and thin down the years.

“It was great fun to be battling away with the guys in front.”

The race had to be reduced to 19 laps after it was halted following a brutal first-lap collision between French rider Loris Baz and Pol Espargaro of Spain.

Baz, on a Ducati, and Espargaro on a Yamaha Tech3 were at the back of the field but debris from their bikes littered the corner and the track.