After dropping to fifth in the early stages of his home Spanish Grand Prix, Jorge Lorenzo
clawed his way back towards the front of the field - then snatched victory from arch-rival Dani Pedrosa
with half a lap to go!
Repsol Honda rider Pedrosa had converted his pole into a turn one lead, then steadily edged away from reigning world champion Valentino Rossi
to hold a seemingly solid two-second advantage by the time Lorenzo took second place away from his team-mate, with six laps to go.
Unlike countryman Pedrosa, Lorenzo had never won in the MotoGP class at Jerez and he threw everything he had into catching the #26. Lorenzo hacked half a second out of Pedrosa each lap and was in a position to strike with two to go.
The 122,000 fans were on their feet as the pair appeared to make contact through the Dry Sack hairpin at the end of the back straight on the penultimate lap, with Lorenzo then diving for an ambitious around-the-outside move at the final turn (pictured) - which again resulted in bumping between the pair.
But the 2009 title runner-up's last-lap victory pass was perfectly executed, gliding his M1 past Pedrosa on the brakes into the Dry Sack, with Pedrosa running wide and losing any chance of retaliation - although Lorenzo took a defensive line into the final turn just to be sure.
The sixth victory of Lorenzo's young career also means he has taken the world championship lead from Rossi, who looked to have no answer for Pedrosa while in second - but also upped his pace in the closing laps to cross the line just 0.89sec from victory.
Rossi was riding with an injured shoulder, sustained in a motocross accident two weeks' ago, while Lorenzo - who finished second to Rossi at Qatar - had previously been battling a hand fracture sustained under similar circumstances before the start of the season.
Lorenzo was euphoric in victory, planting his signature 'Lorenzo's Land' flag into the gravel and even jumping into a lake before returning to parc ferme.
Despite a bitter defeat, the big improver relative to Qatar was Pedrosa, who had only managed seventh in round one after stability problems with his factory Honda.