Reining 125cc world champion and rookie Moto2 title contender Marc Marquez has announced that he will not step up to the premier MotoGP class in 2012.
The 18-year-old has fought back from a tough start to the season, to sit just three points behind Moto2 title leader Stefan Bradl with two rounds remaining.
The Repsol Suter rider briefly took the title lead prior to last weekend's Australian round, where Bradl was able to move narrowly back in front despite a stunning last-to-third charge by the penalised Marquez.
Such performances meant that Marquez's original two-year plan for Moto2 was rumoured to be revised, with a Honda MotoGP ride on offer for 2012.
But on Thursday at Sepang, venue for this weekend's Malaysian MotoGP, Marquez announced that he has decided to stay in Moto2 for another year, regardless of the 2011 title outcome.
"I think the best option is to stay one more year in Moto2, because in every race I learn something new. It was a difficult decision, but I think I made the right choice," said Marquez.
"I'm only 18 and I think remaining in the category for two years is fine. Almost all of the riders stay two years, and I think another year will be good for me because I'll get more experience, and certainly when it comes to MotoGP, if I get there someday, I'll be much more prepared," he added.
Marquez - who failed to score in the first three rounds - has taken seven wins this season, compared with four wins for Bradl, who is also expected to remain in the 600cc class.
Three Honda riders are so far confirmed for 2012: Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa (Repsol), plus Marco Simoncelli (Gresini).