Rossi won by more than six seconds
Reigning MotoGP champion Valentino Rossi claimed his third win in a row in the Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka on Sunday.
The 24-year-old Italian, winner of the last two Grand Prix at the Suzuka circuit, took the lead in the fifth lap and never looked back.
But his victory was soured by a serious crash by Daijiro Kato who was rushed to hospital by helicopter
with concussion and breathing problems. The 26-year-old Japanese rider was in a coma.
Compatriot Max Biaggi was more than six seconds behind, with Ducati rider
Loris Capirossi third and Spain's Sete Gibernau fourth.
Troy Bayliss finished his first MotoGP race
in fifth, six seconds ahead of reigning World Superbike champion.
Ulster's Jeremy McWilliams, who qualified slowest on Friday after problems with hi Proton KR, crashed out of the race after seven
"It's great to win here in Suzuka at the home of Honda,"
"I got off to a good start and had a little
problem with the clutch but everything went well the rest
of the way."
Capirossi gained an early lead but Rossi returned to the
front on the fifth lap and opened up a comfortable buffer
over Biaggi and Capirosi.
"I started in the fourth row so this is a very good
result for me," said Capirossi.
"It was a good day for me
but of course we're all concerned about Kato."
Japanese Grand Prix result:
1. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Honda 44min 13.182sec
2. Max Biaggi
(ITA) Honda 6.445sec behind
3. Loris Capirossi (ITA) Ducati 8.209
4. Sete Gibernau (SPA) Honda 13.209
5. Troy Bayliss (AUS) Ducati
6. Colin Edwards (USA) Aprilia 29.040
7. Nicky Hayden (USA)
8. Alex Barros (BRA) Yamaha 30.526
9. Shinya Nakano
(JPN) Yamaha 33.447
10. Carlos Checa (SPA) Yamaha 40.200
Norick Abe (JPN) Yamaha 44.790
12. Noriyuki Haga (JPN) Aprilia
13. John Hopkins (USA) Suzuki 1:03.950
14. Kenny Roberts
(USA) Suzuki 1:04.085
15. Olivier Jacque (FRA) Yamaha 1:09.990
Garry McCoy (AUS) Kawasaki 1:16.572
17. Andrew Pitt (AUS) Kawasaki
18. Akira Yanagawa (JPN) Kawasaki 1:23.605
Serizawa (JPN) MD211VF 1:35.459
20. Tohru Ukawa (JPN) Honda