Jorge Lorenzo was a start-to-finish winner of his home race at the Catalunya MotoGP as the reigning champion clawed back ground at the top of the 2013 standings.

Factory Yamaha star Lorenzo shot into the lead at the first corner, edging ahead of Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa and controlled the race from the front to win by 1.763 seconds for his third victory of the season.

Pedrosa held off a fearsome attack from team-mate Marc Marquez in the closing laps to narrowly claim the runner-up spot with Valentino Rossi finishing in a lonely fourth.

Lorenzo has reduced the gap to Pedrosa at the top of the championship to seven points after six rounds, with Marquez a further 23 points in arrears.

A number of high-profile contenders crashed out, including Tech 3 Yamaha's Cal Crutchlow, Ducati's Nicky Hayden and Alvaro Bautista on the Gresini Honda.

Crutchlow was holding fourth place - 1.3s behind Lorenzo - when he went down at Turn 7.

The British rider's team-mate, series rookie Bradley Smith, overhauled Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso in the closing stages to claim his best result to date with a brilliant ride to sixth.

Lorenzo, who started from third place on the grid, blasted into the lead from pole man Pedrosa in a sprint to the first corner with Marquez slotting into third ahead of Crutchlow and Rossi.

Bautista was a first lap casualty as he attempted to overtake Rossi - whom he tangled with on the first lap of the previous Mugello round - losing the front end at Turn 10 and narrowly avoiding colliding with the Italian's M1 as he slid into the gravel.

Hayden was making good progress in the early stages and the American forced his way past Andrea Iannone on the Pramac machine to take seventh behind Stefan Bradl as Lorenzo continued to lead from Pedrosa, Marquez, Crutchlow and Rossi.

However, Hayden was also caught out at Turn 10, losing the front of his Desmosedici and sliding out of sixth place after the former world champion had passed Bradl.

Lorenzo, Pedrosa and Marquez began to pull away from Rossi, who in turn had daylight between himself and Bradl in fifth place with Dovizioso and Smith the first seven.

There was no change at the front with 10 laps remaining as Lorenzo held an advantage of only 0.387s over Pedrosa with Marquez still in touch.

Rossi was holding a lonely fourth, around four and a half seconds down on the leading group, with Bradl fifth ahead of Dovizioso, Smith and Aleix Espargaro on the Power Electronics Aspar.

Pedrosa, though, began to drop back slightly as Lorenzo opened an advantage of 0.5s with eight laps to go.

Lorenzo started to turn the screw, lapping in 1m 43.339s with seven laps remaining to increase his lead to 0.877s over Pedrosa as Marquez closed in on his team-mate.

At the end of the 19th lap Lorenzo's lead was now one second, with Pedrosa coming under pressure from Marquez.

The two Repsol Honda riders became embroiled in a thrilling battle as Lorenzo cemented his position at the front.

Marquez was looking increasingly threatening and attempted to slip underneath Pedrosa on the brakes on the penultimate lap, but the young Spaniard lost a few tenths of a second as his RC213V almost pitched him off under heavy braking as Pedrosa closed the door.

Marquez, though, clawed back the deficit to challenge Pedrosa again on the final lap but the championship leader kept his nose in front to hold on for second place.

Rossi took fourth ahead of Bradl, followed by Smith and Dovizioso.

Espargaro, Colin Edwards (Forward Racing FTR Kawasaki) and Michele Pirro on the Ignite Pramac Ducati completed the top ten.

Northern Ireland's Michael Laverty was a faller on lap one after running into the gravel trap at Turn 10, with Randy de Puniet, Andrea Iannone and Karel Abraham also failing to finish.

Catalunya MotoGP:
1. Jorge Lorenzo
2. Dani Pedrosa
3. Marc Marquez
4. Valentino Rossi
5. Stefan Bradl
6. Bradley Smith
7. Andrea Dovizioso
8. Aleix Espargaro
9. Colin Edwards
10. Michele Pirro
11. Danilo Petrucci
12. Claudio Corti
13. Yonny Hernandez
14. Bryan Staring
15. Javier del Amor
16. Lukas Pesek
Hector Barbera
Karel Abraham
Cal Crutchlow
Randy De Puniet
Nicky Hayden
Andrea Iannone
Alvaro Bautista
Michael Laverty

Don't miss out! The next round of the 2013 MotoGP World Championship takes place at Assen on June 27-29 - CLICK HERE to see ticket prices from the Official MotoGP Ticket Store.