Spaniard Marc Marquez refused to be too downbeat after he saw his commanding MotoGP world championship lead slashed in half after a disastrous Phillip Island race.
Marquez knew going into the Australian clash that if he scored eight points more than Yamaha rival Jorge Lorenzo, he would clinch a historic first premier class crown.
A dramatic weekend though dominated by major Bridgestone issues ended in nightmare fashion for Marquez, who was disqualified from the rankings to see his 43-point lead cut to just 18 with Lorenzo capturing a sixth win of the season.
The race was cut to 19-laps because of excessive tyre wear experienced all weekend on a new surface.
The shortened distance included a compulsory pit stop on on either lap nine and 10 to change machinery for fresh rubber.
Marquez and his factory Honda crew though wrongly calculated when he needed to be told to enter the pits and after starting an 11th lap he was black flagged and kicked out of the results.
Marquez said: “My team and I had set out a strategy and we thought that we could come in after lap 10, but in reality this counts as an extra lap. We hadn't had that in mind and this was a huge mistake. We had everything well planned and I followed the instructions on my pit board. You learn from these things though, so now we have to move on and focus on the race in Japan.”
Prior to the costly error, Marquez had been locked in an intense fight for the win with factory Yamaha rival Lorenzo, as he looked to take a giant stride towards becoming the first rookie to win the premier class crown since Kenny Roberts in 1978.
He refused to be too downbeat though and said: "I am disappointed but the positive thing is I was there, like in every race, fighting for the victory with Jorge and Dani, so I feel so strong. This was the most important. It is clear that if we finish second or third it would have been better than a zero and would be much easier in Japan but the important thing is that we are still leading with 18 points ahead.”
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