Marc Marquez has one hand on the title and has taken one step closer to clinching his seventh world title after an intense end to the Thailand Grand Prix.
An eventful last couple of laps at the Chang International Circuit saw Marquez battle with Andrea Dovizioso up to the very last corner. But, Dovizioso’s last corner lunge wasn’t enough to take the victory from Marquez.
Marquez finally got a point in the head-to-head last corner overtakes, where he failed to pull off a last corner overtake in Qatar, Austria and Japan last season against the Ducati man.
Marquez commented on the last corner battle and said: “Honestly, I wasn’t so confident going into the final lap because I’ve lost many head-to-head finishes with him in the past. But this time, we swapped roles—I used Dovi’s style and Dovi used Marquez’s style!—and that worked to overtake him on the corner exit.”
He took the full 25 points to extend his lead in the world championship standings to 77 points ahead of Dovizioso in second place.
He said: “Of course I’m very, very happy today because it’s the first time I’ve beaten Dovi in this way. We were very equal, and my strategy was to try and attack in order to open a gap and avoid having it come down to the last lap.
“But Dovi had a very good pace and I was struggling with the front tyre, so I wasn’t able. Instead, I just tried to manage the tyres and stick to him.”
This means that Marquez can win the title at the Japanese Grand Prix at Motegi, the home of Honda, where he also won the title in 2014 and 2016.
But Marquez isn’t getting ahead of himself just yet, he commented: “Now the first match ball will be in Japan, which is the most important race for Honda as it’s their only home Grand Prix.
“Of course we’ll try our best there, but if it’s not possible, the main target is still to achieve the title at some point.”
At just 25-years-old, Marquez is on the brink of claiming a fifth premier class title in just six years and his seventh overall.