Motorcycling: Doohan closes the gap: Malaysian Grand Prix

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THE AUSTRALIAN Michael Doohan, riding a Honda, was the surprise winner of the Malaysian 500cc Grand Prix in Shah Alam yesterday, beating the championship leader, John Kocinski, into second place.

Doohan completed the 33- lap race in 47min 36.874sec, finishing over five seconds ahead of Kocinski, riding a Cagiva. The American, who started from pole position, has 45 points to Doohan's 41. Japan's Shinichi Itoh, on a Honda, was third.

Massimiliano Biaggi, of Italy, won the 250cc race after leading from start to finish on his Aprilia. Biaggi, 22, completed the 31-lap race in 45min 26.30sec to lead the standings. Honda riders, Tadayuki Okada, of Japan, and Italian Loris Capirossi were second and third.