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By Movistar Yamaha MotoGP

Lorenzo: “Marquez deserves this Championship”

The last man standing in the title fight slides out in Motegi after riding through the pain barrier

Jorge Lorenzo (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) was the final stand in the MotoGP™ paddock’s attempts to hold off the incredible title charge of Repsol Honda rival Marc Marquez, but after an FP3 highside on Saturday morning saw the ‘Spartan’ airlifted to hospital for checks, the task became even more of a challenge. Lorenzo returned to the frontrunners in FP4 and incredibly qualified on the front row – but race day saw the then-reigning Champion’s teammate Valentino Rossi crash out early, and Lorenzo follow suit later in the race after struggling with the front tyre and pushing to the limit – and over it. The fight for P2 now sees Lorenzo fight teammate Rossi in the last three races of the year, with the Italian 14 points ahead.

Jorge Lorenzo (DNF): “I‘m very disappointed, because I made a mistake. I tried to push too much when the bike was not working well with the tyres. In Aragón we made a good decision with the tyres and this time it was the opposite. We chose the wrong front tyre, with the soft I think I would have made a better race, because my front tyre on the first laps was vibrating and closing. I didn‘t have a good feeling, that‘s why I couldn‘t keep up with the pace of Marquez. Finally, because Dovizioso was coming, I pushed more than before in that corner and the front tyre didn‘t give me any support or feedback and I crashed. It‘s a pity, because I think we had the potential to fight for the victory with the right front tyre, but it was impossible today and we lost a great opportunity to be second in the championship. I want to congratulate Marquez because he didn‘t have an advantage from his bike this year and he was the most consistent rider, so he deserves this championship.”

MotoGP™ grid on the #JapaneseGP Race