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Jorge Lorenzo ripped up the formbook to clinch his first victory this season at the Aragon MotoGP as rain created a nerve-jangling climax at the Spanish circuit.

Aleix Espargaro put the Open class Forward Yamaha on the podium with a stunning ride to second place, narrowly holding off Britain's Cal Crutchlow on the Ducati with the pair touching as they flashed across the line to complete the rostrum places.

Repsol Honda pair Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa were both caught out by the conditions in the closing stages, while Movistar Yamaha's Valentino Rossi was taken to hospital for a precautionary scan after the Italian star crashed on lap four after running wide onto the damp AstroTurf at the side of the track.

Marquez will be kicking himself as the world champion opted to remain on the wet track on slick tyres as most of his rivals pitted to switch to their wet set-up machines, leaving Lorenzo to take full advantage as the Spaniard won on home turf to earn his first premier class victory since Valencia last season.

Pedrosa also passed up the opportunity to change to his 'wet' machine and paid the price, losing the front on the brakes going into T1 on lap 20 and crashing out of second place behind Marquez.

And Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso fell victim to the conditions on lap 19, coming off while holding fourth place.

It was a scarcely believable conclusion to a drama-filled 14th round of the MotoGP World Championship, with Yamaha taking the win courtesy of Lorenzo against the odds after the factory team struggled all weekend at Aragon.

Behind the top three, LCR Honda's Stefan Bradl and Monster Yamaha Tech 3 duo Bradley Smith and Pol Espargaro were the top six.

Alvaro Bautista on the Gresini Honda was seventh, with Open class Honda riders Hiroshi Aoyama and the returning Nicky Hayden plus Scott Redding rounding out the top 10.

Pedrosa grabbed the lead into T1 from second place on the front row but soon went backwards, with Iannone shooting to the front on the Pramac Ducati.

Lorenzo made a storming start and was up to third in the opening turns as Pedrosa was pushed back to fourth, with Marquez surging into second.

Marquez and Iannone diced for the lead through the opening turns on lap two as Lorenzo held third from Pedrosa, but Pramac rider Iannone made a costly mistake at T10, running wide off the track onto the wet grass and crashing out at speed. The Italian was uninjured, but his Ducati was badly damaged in the incident.

There was more drama to come on lap four as Rossi went wide at T8, touching the damp AstroTurf before he was thrown from his Yamaha, landing awkwardly. The nine-time world champion appeared hurt, but he was on his feet a short time later and was reportedly taken to hospital later for a precautionary scan following assessment at the medical centre.

Marquez continued to lead from Lorenzo, with Pedrosa now third and a few tenths behind the top two. Pol Espargaro, who impressed during qualifying to take fourth place on the grid, was next followed by Ducati's Cal Crutchlow in fifth.

Espargaro, though, was left to rue an error on lap eight at T12, dropping back into the clutches of Stefan Bradl, Crutchlow and Alvaro Bautista.

Lorenzo moved into the lead for the first time on lap nine, with Marquez taking a long look over his shoulder to see where his team-mate was. Pedrosa remained third, half a second behind.

Marquez took over at the front once more at T1 on lap 12, but Pedrosa was closing in on the pair and appeared to have plenty of momentum.

However, on lap 13 the white flags were displayed as the first few spots of light rain began to fall, offering riders the chance to pit and change bikes.

Lorenzo and Marquez swapped places on lap 14, taking turns to lead with reports of heavier rain now falling in pit lane.

On the next lap both Marquez and Pedrosa found a way past Lorenzo, who was shunted back to third while Dovizioso held a comfortable fourth ahead of Pol and Aleix Espargaro, Crutchlow and Bautista.

On a gripping 17th lap, Pedrosa forced his nose in front for the first time from Marquez at T3 but a series of passes ensued, with the Honda pair trading punches before Pedrosa settled the matter temporarily at least heading into the Corkscrew.

A number of riders including Aleix Espargaro, Crutchlow, Smith, Bradl, Bautista, Nicky Hayden and Alex de Angelis pulled into pit lane on lap 18 to change to their wet set-up machines as the rain began to increase at Aragon.

Dovizioso was caught out on lap 19, limping away after going down on the Ducati and the same fate befell Pedrosa at T1 on the following lap, who was lying second behind Marquez.

Lorenzo opted to pull in to change machines and it was a decision that ultimately earned him his first victory this season, with Marquez - to the apparent bewilderment of his team in pit lane - staying out on track before the inevitable happened on lap 21 at T2. Both Marquez and Pedrosa managed to remount and return to the pits, finally changing bikes, but the damage was already done.

Lorenzo was now clear in the lead from Aleix Espargaro and Crutchlow, with Bradl in fourth on the LCR Honda.

With only a few laps remaining, Lorenzo was firmly in control and stretched his lead over Espargaro to six seconds going onto the final lap, although Crutchlow fancied his chances of taking the runner-up spot and was putting the Forward Yamaha rider under pressure.

As Lorenzo closed out an unlikely victory, Crutchlow and Espargaro were virtually side by side as they powered over the line, with the pair touching fairings on the charge past the flag.

But an ecstatic Espargaro managed to hold on for second on the Open class machine, with Crutchlow taking a surprise third on the Ducati to offer some consolation in an otherwise poor season on the Italian machine.

Despite the bedlam, Marquez still managed to stretch his lead in the championship to lead Pedrosa by 75 points, who moves into second following Rossi's DNF, albeit by the slim margin of three points.

Race winner Lorenzo is now only 10 points behind Rossi in third as the battle for second place in the standings intensifies.

Aragon MotoGP:
1. Jorge Lorenzo
2. Aleix Espargaro
3. Cal Crutchlow
4. Stefan Bradl
5. Bradley Smith
6. Pol Espargaro
7. Alvaro Bautista
8. Hiroshi Aoyama
9. Nicky Hayden
10. Scott Redding
11.Danilo Petrucci
12. Alex De Angelis
13. Marc Marquez
14. Dani Pedrosa
15. Yonny Hernandez
16. Michael Laverty
17. Mike Di Meglio
18. Broc Parkes
19. Hector Barbera
Andrea Dovizioso
Valentino Rossi
Andrea Iannone
Karel Abraham