Marc Marquez charged back to within six points of the 125cc title lead with a textbook victory at Motegi in Japan on Sunday.

After the misery of dropping from first to third in the world championship by being knocked off at turn one in his home Aragon round, Marquez slotted safely into second at the start of the Japanese event - just behind title leader Nico Terol.

The Red Bull Ajo Derbi rider then closely studied his opponent and, when sure of his superior speed, overtook fellow Spaniard Terol on lap 8 of 20.

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Marquez then rode to his seventh victory of the season by a comfortable 2.612sec.

Marquez began round 13 (of 17) eleven points behind Terol, a deficit he has now almost halved heading into next Sunday's round at Sepang in Malaysia.

Third title contender Pol Espargaro, who started six points from Terol, had been off-pace all weekend and spent the first half of the race trying to extract third from Terol's team-mate Bradley Smith.

But Smith pulled away from Espargaro thereafter for his third podium of the season, while (a distant) fourth for Espargaro means he is now 13 points behind Terol.

Espargaro's Tuenti Derbi team-mate Efren Vazquez weaved towards turn one and collided with Smith, sending Vasquez to the ground and taking Jonas Folger out with him.

Folger was OK, while Vasquez will have a precautionary CAT scan after a mild concussion.

Race results - Motegi:

1. Marquez (Derbi) 20 laps
2. Terol (Aprilia) +2.612s
3. Smith (Aprilia) +8.396s
4. Espargaro (Derbi) +18.873s
5. Moncayo (Aprilia) +31.973s
6. Rabat (Aprilia) +32.139s
7. Webb (Aprilia) +46.716s
8. Salom (Aprilia) +49.444s
9. Martin (Aprilia) +49.867s
10. Zarco (Aprilia) +55.912s

Kent (Lambretta) DNF