A careful review of MM nipping at JL's heels showed a sliding lunging wobbly newbie rider doing whatever was necessary to get around a smooth fast, consistent rider and into 2nd place. I wasn't sure which was the greater talent to be honest.
I do find the likes of JL and Casey Droner to be admirable and an exercise in controlled beauty in riding on those times when they escape the pack. It is boring as hell once they get away but when a terrier like MM or Rossi pulls up and takes them down it is a hoot. I hope MotoGP doesn't get too NASCAR-like.
The first few laps on fresh tires and a strong motor seems to have a disproportionate influence on the outcome.