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Marc Marquez wins sixth consecutive MotoGP of the Americas

© AFP/File | Spain's biker Marc Marquez, , pictured on April 8, 2018, won his sixth consecutive MotoGP Grand Prix of the Americas

WASHINGTON (AFP) - 

Two-time defending world champion Marc Marquez won his sixth consecutive MotoGP Grand Prix of the Americas on Sunday despite being dropped from pole position to fourth on the starting grid by a qualifying penalty.

The Spanish Honda rider won by 3.5 seconds from compatriot Maverick Vinales (Yamaha) over 20 laps of the 3.426-mile (5.513km), 20-corner circuit at Austin, Texas with Italy's Andrea Iannone (Suzuki) third.

The 25-year-old Spaniard was a winner from the pole in all five prior Austin races, taking his first MotoGP win at the track in 2013, and led qualifying for a sixth consecutive year.

But he only started fourth on the grid after a three-spot penalty for slow riding and disturbing Vinales on a fast lap in Saturday qualifying.

Marquez jumped from fourth to second at the start on Sunday, was in the lead before the first lap ended and stayed in front to the finish.

"It was my strategy to start and just push," Marquez said. "I didn't have confidence to battle. I just push and open a gap and hopefully I get away."

Marquez jumped to second in the driver points standings.

© 2018 AFP