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Pedrosa holds off Lorenzo in Brno to cut MotoGP title gap

updated 5:40 AM EDT, Mon August 27, 2012
Dani Pedrosa claimed his third victory of the season after a thrilling race in Brno.
Dani Pedrosa claimed his third victory of the season after a thrilling race in Brno.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Honda's Dani Pedrosa wins Czech MotoGP in Brno
  • Pedrosa cuts lead on title leader Jorge Lorenzo to 13 points
  • Yamaha's Lorenzo finished second after last lap duel
  • Cal Crutchlow of Britain on podium for first time

(CNN) -- Dani Pedrosa won a thrilling last-lap duel with championship leader and fellow Spaniard Jorge Lorenzo to claim Sunday's Czech MotoGP in Brno.

Pedrosa and 2010 world champion Lorenzo swapped the lead on the 22nd lap of the 5.4-kilometer circuit before the Honda rider claimed a memorable third win of the season.

He has cut Lorenzo's lead in the title race to just 13 points with six races left in the elite division of motorcycle racing.

Yamaha's Lorenzo had led from pole until Pedrosa took the lead halfway through the race. Lorenzo claimed it back only for Pedrosa to move ahead for the final time and take the checkered flag.

"It was half a lap to go and I was a little more nervous than before but... on almost the last corner I got along with him, he tried to release the brakes and we were head-to-head into the corner, but I could... win the race," he told the official MotoGP website.

Britain's Cal Crutchlow claimed the first podium spot of his MotoGP career on his works Yamaha ahead of Italian teammate Andrea Dovizioso, who will replace Valentino Rossi at Ducati next season.

But they were over 12 seconds behind the leading pair, who dominated from the start.

Last year's Brno winner, world champion Casey Stoner of Australia, was absent with a fractured ankle and has conceded his title defense is over as he needs surgery.

Stoner will retire at the end of the season and his Repsol Honda team has announced he will be replaced by 19-year-old Spanish prospect Marc Marquez, who will move up from the Moto2 division having been the 125cc world champion in 2010.

Marquez won the Moto2 race in Brno, with Germany's Jonas Folger taking the Moto3 honors.

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