Marc Marquez claimed his third race win in a row with victory at the French Grand Prix to surge ahead in the MotoGP™ standings as Andrea Dovizioso and Johann Zarco crashed out.
The Repsol Honda rider built a lead at the top in Spain last time out as three of his nearest competitors, including Dovizioso, failed to finish and that was again the theme at Le Mans.
Home favourite Zarco had claimed pole, but a poor start left the Frenchman chasing Jorge Lorenzo and both he and Dovizioso crashed out.
Marquez took the lead and held on, taking his advantage at the top of the championship to a massive 36 points. Danilo Petrucci and Valentino Rossi finished second and third respectively.
Zarco recovered ground at Turn 3 of the first lap, but soon let Dovizioso through, with the Ducati man then looking to take on team-mate Lorenzo and crashed as he went wide at Turn 6 seconds after hitting the front in the fourth lap.
And Marquez, in third, looked to pick off Zarco and saw the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 rider take a poor line through Turn 8 and skid away with 20 laps remaining.
With two riders out of the way, Marquez kicked on again and streaked away from the fading Lorenzo.
Petrucci kept the pressure on, but he could not reel in the defending world champion as the Spaniard again improved his standing.
IN THE POINTS
1. Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda)
2. Danilo Petrucci (Alma Pramac) +2.310 seconds
3. Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha) +5.350
4. Jack Miller (Alma Pramac) +6.314
5. Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda) +7.419
6. Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati) +10.355
7. Maverick Vinales (Monster Yamaha) +23.758
8. Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) +25.795
9. Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia) +26.206
10. Alex Rins (Suzuki Ecstar) +27.937
11. Pol Espargaro (KTM) +32.304
12. Hafizh Syahrin (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) +34.962
13. Franco Morbidelli (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) +37.881
14. Bradley Smith (KTM) +38.299
15. Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda) +41.986
1. Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda) 95
2. Maverick Vinales (Monster Yamaha) 59
3. Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) 58
4. Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha) 56
5. Danilo Petrucci (Alma Pramac) 54
1. Repsol Honda 124
2. Movistar Yamaha 115
3. Alma Pramac Racing 103
4. Monster Yamaha Tech 3 71
5. Suzuki Ecstar 69
Dovizioso will hope to enjoy more luck at his home Italian Grand Prix in a fortnight, having won it last year. Marquez has triumphed only once at the Mugello Circuit in MotoGP™.