TERMAS DE RíO HONDO: World champion Marc Marquez stormed to a lights-to-flag Argentina MotoGP triumph on Sunday ahead of bitter rival Valentino Rossi, describing his performance as "the perfect day".
Honda rider Marquez claimed his 45th career victory in the elite class, finishing 10 seconds ahead of Rossi on a Yamaha.
Andrea Dovizioso, who won the season-opener in Qatar, was third on a Ducati.
Marquez, chasing a sixth MotoGP world title, now leads the 2019 championship after two rounds of the 19-race series.
"Today, it was a perfect day. I pushed all the time and five laps from the end I could ease off to save the engine and the tyres," said Marquez. "It's been one of the most solid weekends of my MotoGP career. On the first laps, I wanted to make the biggest difference possible, it was strategy, I attacked and I saw the gap widen."
As Marquez was rarely threatened in Sunday's race, the wheel-to-wheel action was being ratcheted up behind him as Rossi and Dovizioso switched places 12 times.
But 40-year-old Rossi had the last laugh, pouncing on a Dovizioso error on the last lap to take second place on the same circuit where 12 months ago he had collided with Marquez and crashed out.
"I waited and I got past him on the last lap," said Rossi, now in his 20th season in the elite MotoGP class and who made the podium for the first time since Germany in July last year. "It's a great day for the team. It's been a long time since I was on the podium."
Australia's Jack Miller on a Ducati-Pramac was fourth, Alex Rins of Spain on a Suzuki was fifth ahead of Ducati's Danilo Petrucci.