(CNN)Marc Marquez clinched his eighth world title, his sixth in the MotoGP premier class, on Sunday with a thrilling final corner victory at the Thailand Grand Prix in Buriram.
Marc Marquez pips Fabio Quartararo in Thai thriller to clinch MotoGP title
The Catalan needed only to finish two points ahead of his closest rival, Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso, and the Italian was never remotely close enough to spoil the Repsol Honda rider's almost inevitable party.
The race weekend had been far from straightforward for Marquez, though. A terrifying high-side crash during the first practice session on Friday had seen the man from Cervera leave the circuit's medical center on a stretcher.
After a brief stay in hospital for checks he was discharged, but the reigning champion found himself in the gravel again, albeit in less spectacular fashion, during qualifying after pushing too hard on a flying lap.
The race, too, did not always look as though it would go his way. Fabio Quartararo, the young Petronas Yamaha rookie, led from pole with Marquez close behind. The two stretched ahead of the pack, with the factory Yamaha rider Maverick Viñales tracking them from a distance.
For a while it looked as though Marquez might even settle for a second place that would have easily seen him clinch the title -- he only needed to finish two points ahead of Dovizioso, who was a distant fourth. But settling is not the factory Honda rider's style.