Valentino Rossi beat team-mate and title rival Jorge Lorenzo
by just 0.099sec to win Sunday's German Grand Prix at the Sachsenring, equaling Giacomo Agostini's all-time record of 159 podium finishes in the process.
After wet weather in two of the four track sessions prior to the race, the main event took place in dry but windy conditions, and with Rossi holding pole into an early lead at turn one.
By the end of the first lap the top four riders in the world championship - each of whom have at least one win to their credit this season - were occupying the top four places, with Rossi being followed by Dani Pedrosa, Casey Stoner
Stoner was the early man on the move, passing Pedrosa for second on lap 5 of 30 and then seizing the lead from Rossi under braking at the bottom of the hill on lap 7. But the Ducati star couldn't shake off his rivals and was re-passed by Rossi on lap 17, then lost second to Lorenzo a few turns later.
The Fiat Yamahas then began to edge out a few vital tenths with Lorenzo, riding with shoulder and foot injuries from his Laguna Seca qualifying accident, locked on Rossi's rear wheel until five laps to go, when he dived ahead at turn one.
Rossi, using a softer rear tyre than Lorenzo, followed the 22-year-old Spaniard until the start of the penultimate lap, when he outbraked the #99 at the same turn.
The last lap began with Lorenzo certain to attempt a victory pass, but Rossi went defensive into turn one then withstood everything Lorenzo had to offer to win his fourth race of the season, and the 101st of his grand prix career, by a whisker.
Joining the M1 riders on the podium was Pedrosa, who had overtaken Stoner at turn one with 5 laps to go but was just out of reach of the victory fight and - with Stoner running wide after apparent tyre problems - settled for a safe third, seven seconds ahead of the Australian.
In the world championship, Rossi is now 14 points ahead of Lorenzo with Stoner 28 points - over one race distance - from the top.