Bagnaia held on for a crucial victory after rebuffing a mid-race pass by fellow Ducati rider Bastianini, while Quartararo made a late push but couldn’t quite catch the leading duo.

Bagnaia now takes a 23-point lead over Yamaha’s reigning champion Quartararo into next weekend’s Valencia finale.

Quartararo: I was almost three seconds from you guys, then I catch, I catch, I catch, but I was…

Bagnaia: We had 4-5 laps where it was difficult to push because we were battling a bit. It’s true that we had just two overtakes, but being [so] close like this it was always a bit difficult to improve.

Quartararo: I think I was +1.6s at one time, from 2.5s

Bastianini: You were 1.3-1.4s

Bagnaia vs Quartararo in MotoGP title SHOWDOWN! | Malaysian MotoGP 2022

Quartararo: Yeah? At Turn 14 the front there was really…

Bastianini: But in the slow corners more, for me, like Turn 2.

Quartararo: For me the left side was much better than the right.

Bastianini: For me, no. Also Turn 5 was difficult.

Bagnaia: At the start, how many overtakes?

Quartararo: I think I overtake five. Because you were…

Bagnaia: I was already second!

Quartararo: I think I was fifth or sixth. I passed about six riders. I made not a good start, but I braked [late].

Bagnaia: Me too. I said ‘okay, now I’ll brake very hard’. I was quite confident everything was okay, but my problem was I did the warm-up lap a bit too slow and the edge of the tyres was very slippy.