Rossi closes the gap in Italy

 

Motorcycling: Valentino Rossi closed the gap on Loris Capirossi and Nicky Hayden at the top of the MotoGP championship standings with a home victory for the Italian.

The win is Rossi's fifth in a row at the circuit but he only just nicked it from Capirossi, when he took the lead a lap and a half from the end to win by 0.575 seconds.

The win is a huge boost to Rossi after he failed to finish the last two rounds of competition in China and France.

The victory was only Italian Rossi's second of the year after he triumphed in Qatar in April. American Hayden finished third.

The result left Hayden and Italy's Capirossi tied at the top of the championship standings on 99 points from six races. Marco Melandri slipped back to third on 89 points after finishing sixth.

Rossi climbed to fifth overall on 65 points.