Marc Marquez officially dropped out of MotoGP title contention with a subdued fourth in Sunday's Japanese Grand Prix.

Champion since joining the premier-class in 2013, Marquez had admitted that his chances of three-in-a-row realistically ended with a fall in the wet at Silverstone - the fourth of his five DNFs this season.

Marquez's latest misfortune saw the Repsol Honda star fracture the fifth metacarpal of his left hand in a mountain bike accident, prompting surgery just before Japan.

Although he qualified on the front row, Marquez openly doubted that he could challenge the Yamahas of Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi in the dry and never felt fully comfortable with his RCV in the wet.

The Spaniard spent most of the grand prix in fifth position, passing Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso with four laps to go, but was 28-seconds behind race winning team-mate Dani Pedrosa.

"Today honestly from the warm-up I struggled with the feeling in wet conditions," Marquez said. "Normally in the wet I am always fast and have a good feeling. But today I was struggling with the set-up.

"We made some small changes for the race, so as not to take too many risks, but I never felt good and in the end we finished fourth. Yeah we can be happy with the hand like this, but always we want more.

"It was more the acceleration side, where I was struggling more. Especially mid-corner and exit. But now want to check [the data] because sure by changing my riding style I can improve a little bit, but in Silverstone I was really fast. In Misano also I was fast in the wet, but here we struggled.

"The wet weather was a help for the hand at least. It was a little painful in the dry, but in the wet it was much better.

"Now I look forward to going to Phillip Island, which is a circuit that should be better for us and is one of my favourites.

"I'd also like to send my best wishes to Alex De Angelis - we are all thinking of him."

Marquez, 86 points behind Valentino Rossi with only 75 still available, starts the final three rounds with a 25-point advantage over Andrea Iannone for third overall.



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