Behind the leading trio, Carlos Checa recovered masterfully to take fourth place and was at times the fastest rider on the track by more than half a second per lap but eventually finished seven seconds back while Olivier Jacque triumphed in another titanic scrap for fifth place, albeit half a minute behind the leaders.
Jacque lead home Tohru Ukawa, Shinya Nakano, Norick Abe and Jurgen Van de Goorbergh who all passed the struggling Rossi in the second half of the race and 'Vale' was also overtaken by pole sitter Max Biaggi with three laps to go and eventually finished eleventh.
Biaggi's performance was by far the most disappointing of the day with his combination of cut slicks and slicks simply proving the wrong choice for the Italian who was never a factor in the race. Garry McCoy too was a tremendous disappointment and the Red Bull Yamaha rider was in danger of being lapped come races end and finished 12th.
Anthony West, Johan Stigefelt and Barry Veneman completed the points scorers while Leon Haslam just missed out and came home 16th, two laps adrift.
Despite his dismal showing, Biaggi gained one point on Rossi in the points standings and now trails by 42 with fur races remaining this year.
Today however, belonged to Gibernau and Suzuki.