Rossi suffered his first DNF of the season when he lost the front of his Fiat Yamaha moments after lunging inside a hard-to-pass Randy de Puniet for sixth position, on lap five of 30.

More pictures of the former five-times MotoGP world champion's rare mistake can be seen below.

While a downbeat Rossi made his way back to the pits, Dani Pedrosa won his first race of the season, ahead of Loris Capirossi and Nicky Hayden.