With third in the championship assured, Jorge Lorenzo has 'nothing to lose' in his quest to snatch second overall from Yamaha team-mate Valentino Rossi in this weekend's Valencia MotoGP season finale.

Just 16th in the standings after a disastrous opening pair of events, Lorenzo has finished on the podium in the last nine rounds - including two wins - propelling him up the championship order.

However Rossi has fought back by beating the Spaniard in the last two races, handing the Italian an eight-point lead heading into a Valencia event Lorenzo won last season.

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"I'm proud with my second half of the season from the Sachsenring to here. Always on the podium," Lorenzo said. "Unfortunately in the last two races we haven't been able to achieve the result we wanted. At Phillip Island it was the tyre, at Sepang probably my physical condition, plus Valentino and Marc riding very, very fast.

"Now it's the last race of the season. We have nothing to lose," he declared. "We will try to win the race and then see what happens with the overall championship result. If Dani and Marc finish in front of Valentino we can finish second. A good position. Maybe that is a little easier than [the chance of] winning the championship last season, but it is still difficult."

The double world champion admitted it was hard to believe how dramatically his fortunes had changed after a nightmare first half of the season.

"Difficult to believe where we are now because we were very, very far from Marc, but also Dani and Valentino," Lorenzo said. "Our results have been good and, helped by some mistakes by Vale and Dani, we've caught them so much. Vale finished in front of me at the last two races though, which hasn't helped my options for second place."

Compatriot and newly confirmed double world champion Marc Marquez was asked for his thoughts on who is favourite for the second place battle.

"Difficult to say. Valentino did incredible races in Phillip Island and Malaysia. He has struggled here before, but this year he has always been competitive. Jorge did a strong second half of the season and will be fast," Marquez replied.

"It will be interesting to see this battle between the team-mates. But Valentino has a lot of experience and he depends on himself [to get second overall] so I think he can manage well. But also Jorge as we saw last year is competitive here and will fight for the second place."