Cal Crutchlow became the first ever British winner of the Australian Grand Prix with a dominant victory at Phillip Island over Valentino Rossi.

The LCR Honda rider was left clear in front when race leader and world champion Marc Marquez slid out of the race at Honda corner and Crutchlow never put a foot wrong as he closed out his second ever premier class triumph.

Crutchlow, who won a MotoGP race for the first time earlier this season at Brno, pulled away from Movistar Yamaha rider Rossi in second place and won by more than four seconds at the finish.

Rossi, who started from 15th place on the grid, scythed through the field to clinch an excellent runner-up finish as the Doctor increased his advantage to 24 points over team-mate Jorge Lorenzo in the standings in their battle for second position.

The 37-year-old was joined on the rostrum by Maverick Vinales, who put Suzuki back on the premier class podium at Phillip Island for the first time since Chris Vermeulen in 2006. Vinales also had to battle his way through the pack after qualifying in 13th on the GSX-RR.

The top six was completed by Andrea Dovizioso on the factory Ducati GP16, Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) and Lorenzo.

American rider Nicky Hayden's Repsol Honda return was marred following a collision with Aussie Jack Miller at Honda corner, which left the 2006 world champion in the gravel.

There was more misery for Hector Barbera, who suffered another fall on the factory Ducati as he replaced the injury-hit Andrea Iannone for the second race in succession.

Aleix Espargaro also fell after coming under pressure from team-mate Vinales in a battle for the final rostrum place, which also involved Italian rider Dovizioso.

Monster Tech 3 Yamaha's Pol Espargaro got the jump on his rivals from third place on the front row to shoot into the lead, but Marquez soon forged his way to the front on lap one and quickly began to out some daylight between himself and the chasing pack.

Crutchlow was battling with Suzuki's Espargaro for third place and made a pass stick as he slotted into second place and began his pursuit of Marquez. However, new world champion Marquez crashed out on lap nine and Crutchlow suddenly found himself in the lead on the satellite Honda.

Rossi was charging through the field following his fifth row start, picking off Pol Espargaro and Dovizioso before hunting down Aleix Espargaro to snatch second place. The nine-time world champion set off after Crutchlow but there was nothing Rossi could do to breach the deficit as the race leader began to stretch his advantage, opening up an unassailable lead.

Rossi, who was running the soft Michelin front, lost more time after a moment at Turn 4 and barring a mistake, the race was Crutchlow's to lose.

The biggest concern for the British rider was keeping heat in his front tyre after Crutchlow opted to run the hard front, but he kept his cool to see out the race in convincing style.

Vinales joined the fight for third place behind Rossi with Aleix Espargaro and Dovizioso. The young Spaniard was applying the pressure when Espargaro fell at Turn 4, with Vinales pulling away to secure the final place on the rostrum.

Dovizioso finished fourth followed by Pol Espargaro, with a subdued Jorge Lorenzo in sixth on the Movistar Yamaha.

Scott Redding struck a blow in his points fight with Pramac Ducati team-mate Danilo Petrucci as the duo stake their claim for a Ducati GP17 ride in 2017, with Redding taking seventh while the Italian had to settle for eighth behind Bradley Smith, who impressed in his second race back from injury on the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha.

Jack Miller was also embroiled in a frantic battle for seventh place and eventually earned a top ten finish on the Marc VDS Honda. The Aussie was involved in an incident at Honda corner with Nicky Hayden, who fell from the Repsol Honda after the pair touched.

Aprilia riders Stefan Bradl and Alvaro Bautista finished 11th and 12th respectively, with Aspar Ducati duo Yonny Hernandez and Eugene Laverty and Australian rider Mike Jones (Avintia Ducati) picking up the final points as they completed the top 15.

Australian MotoGP:1.Cal Crutchlow2.Valentino Rossi3.Maverick Vi?ales4.Andrea Dovizioso5.Pol Espargaro6.Jorge Lorenzo7.Scott Redding8.Bradley Smith9.Danilo Petrucci10.Jack Miller11.Stefan Bradl12.Alvaro Bautista13.Yonny Hernandez14.Eugene Laverty15.Mike Jones16.Tito Rabat17.Nicky Hayden
Hector Barbera
Aleix Espargaro
Marc Marquez
Loris Baz

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