Marquez wins fifth Grand Prix of the Americas

Spain's biker Marc Marquez, in action on April 8, 2017, won his fifth Moto Grand Prix of the Americas

Spain's Marc Marquez captured his fifth consecutive Moto Grand Prix of the Americas on Sunday, remaining perfect at the US race after beating Italy's Valentino Rossi by 3.069 seconds.

Honda rider Marquez, whose Americas wins have all come from the pole, won in 43min 58.770sec with Yamaha star Rossi second in his best-ever finish at the Texas track.

Spanish Honda rider Dani Pedrosa was third in his third podium finish over the 5.513km, 20-turn layout in Austin.

Marquez, who has won 11 starts in a row on US tracks, rebounded from an early crash out two weeks ago at Argentina as he tries to jump start his bid for a fourth world championship in five years and second in a row.

"This was a crucial race because after Argentina it was important to come back in the best way, so we are really happy with this result," Marquez said.

"Although I won, it was difficult, because the temperature was much higher than yesterday. Five minutes before the start, I said to my chief mechanic, 'OK, let's use the hard tire' because I knew that I would push the medium front tire a lot.

Spaniard Maverick Vinales, the early season points leader after winning the first two races at Qatar and Argentina, crashed out on his Yamaha early and lost the points edge to teammate Rossi, who stands on 56 to 50 for Vinales and Marquez jumping to third overall on 38.

Second-row starters Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo of Ducati surged at the start and the hectic first-lap pace would claim Vinales at turn 18, lowsiding safely but ending his first point-less day since last year in Argentina.

Marquez began pulling away on lap eight.

"I was behind Dani and when I saw that he was struggling a little bit and Valentino was challenging, I said, 'Time to attack,'" he said. "I was able to win and I'm happy to be back in the championship."

Rossi, whose troubled Texas history included crashing out last year, closed late to overtake Pedrosa for second and the points lead.

"In the end, it was difficult to manage the front tire," Pedrosa said. "I could feel that the right side was finished so I couldn't prevent Valentino from passing me. After the crash in Argentina, I wanted to avoid losing the front, so I just tried to finish."

The teams now move to Jerez, Spain, for the fourth race of the campaign, an event Rossi won last year.