After errors at Misano and Aragon, Marc Marquez has his first chance to wrap-up the 2014 MotoGP title in Honda's home event at Motegi this weekend.

Winner of eleven of the opening twelve races, the all-action 21-year-old has scored just four points in the past two rounds.

The Spaniard fell while fighting to stay with race leader Valentino Rossi at Misano, then tried to defy the increasing rain at Aragon, slipping out of the lead with just three laps remaining.

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But an almost identical error by team-mate and nearest rival Dani Pedrosa, combined with an early exit for third in the championship Rossi, meant Marquez actually increased his advantage by a single point.

If Marquez can maintain his present 75-point lead by the end of Sunday's Japanese race he will be crowned champion for a second time, with three rounds still remaining. Pedrosa is 75 points behind Marquez, Rossi 78 points and Jorge Lorenzo 90 points.

"Arag?n was a difficult situation and we learnt a valuable lesson," said Marquez, who won his first MotoGP title as a rookie in last year's final round showdown with Lorenzo. "However, we were lucky that we didn't lose points to our rivals and now I know that in Japan it's my first chance to take the Championship.

"I will try not to think about it too much - even if I know it would be great to achieve this on Honda's home soil - we will go there and work hard from day one and treat it as a normal race weekend and push for the victory on Sunday.

"Last year was my first visit to Motegi on a MotoGP machine and it was a very difficult weekend, so we hope to have more dry track time this year to find a good setup!"

Marquez finished second to Yamaha's Lorenzo at Motegi last season. Victory on Sunday would also allow Marquez to equal Mick Doohan's all-time record of twelve wins in a season, dating back to 1997.


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Although MM virtually has it in the bag, he will be under pressure to wrap it up this weekend. Honda owns the track and they would like nothing more than to seal the title on home turf.

Honda orders are probably firm to scale him back to the calculated, controlled "end of season" Honda rider-boy accepting defeat to win a title. Which is almost equally sad as actual team-Honda-orders

I just hope he'll win the title in a more stylish fashion i.e. on the top-step rather than a sort of "not loose" the WC in a sissy 3rd or worse place. He could make it even worse to ride more risky in the last races again, as soon he's got the WC in his pocket just "because I". That would be the most predictable end though...