Rossi and Stoner remained locked together for the rest of the race, passing and re-passing each other until Stoner stung Rossi with a block-pass into the last corner, on the very last lap.
It must have been especially frustrating for Rossi, since he lost the 2003 race at the exact same turn to Sete Gibernau.
Eleven seconds behind Rossi, Dovizioso collected fifth position after a spirited battle with top rookie Marco Simoncelli (Honda Gresini), with Americans Nicky Hayden (Ducati) and Ben Spies (Tech 3 Yamaha) seventh and eighth.
The remaining four riders were Hector Barbera (Aspar Ducati), who couldn't sustain his best grid position of sixth, Marco Melandri (Honda Gresini), Loris Capirossi (Rizla Suzuki) and Alex de Angelis (Interwetten Honda).
de Angelis was riding in his first MotoGP race since Valencia 2009 and finished just 0.162sec behind Capirossi.
German Grand Prix:
12. de Angelis