Just when Jorge Lorenzo looked to be getting the better of his Qatar tyre misery, the former double world champion was dumped out of the lead on the opening lap of Sunday's night race.
The Movistar Yamaha rider had been outside the top ten during the opening two nights, after a repeat of his Sepang test problems with the new heat-resistant Bridgestone tyres.
However he rose to fifth in qualifying, then third in Sunday's warm-up - before bolting into the lead at turn one of the race. Lorenzo's hopes of a third Qatar win in succession then came to an abrupt end when the front suddenly folded on entry to the penultimate turn.
“I made a mistake, it was a long time ago that I last did that in a race!” said Lorenzo, whose last race accident was Valencia 2012. “We are not perfect; we are only human and sometimes we make mistakes. The tyres were different to last year and the temperature of the tarmac was a little colder.
“I didn't take these circumstances into account and I was too fast into the corner when the front and rear tyre were not ready yet. It's a pity to lose so many points with Marc and Valentino and Dani who are the favourites.
“Valentino demonstrated that the Yamaha can fight even with these tyres and the championship is very long so let's see what happens in Austin.”
Rossi finished just 0.259s from Repsol Honda race winner Marc Marquez, whose team-mate Pedrosa was third.