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Monster Energy Yamaha Maverick Vinales celebrates his victory on podium during the Malaysian MotoGP in Sepang. - NSTP/Syarafiq Abd Samad

SEPANG: Spain’s Maverick Vinales stormed to a dominant victory in the Malaysian MotoGP Sunday as world champion Marc Marquez fought his way from near the back of the starting grid to finish second.

Ducati rider Andrea Dovizioso came in third but there was disappointment for French rookie Fabio Quartararo, who only managed a lacklustre seventh-place after starting from pole.

Vinales dominated at the Sepang circuit from the outset, quickly breaking through the pack and taking the lead from the early stages after starting second on the grid.

Malaysian MotoGP rider Hafizh Syahrin of Red Bull KTM Tech 3 in action during the Malaysian MotoGP in Sepang. -NSTP/Syarafiq Abd Samad

The Monster Energy Yamaha rider steadily extended his lead over the rest of the pack and never looked threatened.

Vinales had a lead of about two seconds over Marquez by lap 12 of the 20-lap race, and he finished over three seconds in front.

It was a major boost for Vinales following last week’s Australian MotoGP, where he crashed out after leading for much of the race.

Monster Energy Yamaha Maverick Vinales celebrates his victory with his crew. - NSTP/Syarafiq Abd Samad

Marquez, crowned world champion for the sixth time last month, had started in 11th place after a terrifying crash in qualifying which saw him thrown from his bike.

But the Repsol Honda rider surged into second place after just a few laps and stayed there until the end of the race. -- AFP

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