- Associated Press - Sunday, May 7, 2017

JEREZ DE LA FRONTERA, Spain (AP) - Dani Pedrosa won MotoGP’s Spanish Grand Prix from pole position on Sunday.

Pedrosa opened a comfortable lead early on and cruised to his victory at the 4.4 kilometer (2.7-mile) Circuito de Jerez in southern Spain.

It was Pedrosa’s 30th MotoGP win, and first since last year’s San Marino GP in September. He has won a MotoGP race in each of the last 12 years.

“This weekend was amazing,” Pedrosa said. “It was not as easy as it might have seemed, but I enjoyed it anyway.”

Pedrosa’s Honda teammate Marc Marquez finished second, more than six seconds behind, and Jorge Lorenzo was third in an all-Spanish podium.

“Normally Jerez is one of the difficult tracks for me,” Marquez said. “It was one of the most important weekends of the year and we did well, really good.”

Pedrosa, who finished third in the U.S. GP last month, also had the fastest lap in Jerez.

“After the last podium and this win, we hope to continue in this line,” Pedrosa said.

It was Lorenzo’s first podium finish since moving to Ducati last season.

“Everybody knows how difficult it is to be competitive at this moment,” Lorenzo said. “It’s a very good result for me and for the team.”

Italian veteran Valentino Rossi of Yamaha started seventh and finished only 10th, seeing his overall lead drop to two points over teammate and Maverick Vinales of Spain, who was sixth on Sunday.

Defending champion Marquez is four points behind Rossi, and Pedrosa is 10 points off the lead in fourth place.

MotoGP rookie Johann Zarco of France was fourth in Sunday’s race, ahead of Italian Andrea Dovizioso of Ducati.

The next race is in Le Mans in two weeks.

Marquez’s brother, Alex Marquez, won the Moto2 race and fellow Spaniard Aron Canet won the Moto3 event.

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