Marquez lost the MotoGP title lead when his engine dramatically expired during Sunday's British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

The reigning world champion was fighting in the lead group when a cloud of smoke erupted from the rear of his RCV at the end of the 200mph Hangar Straight.

It signalled what is thought to be the first Repsol Honda engine failure in a MotoGP race since Nicky Hayden in 2007.

Compounding Marquez's misery was that nearest title rival Andrea Dovizioso went on to win the race, allowing the Ducati rider to take the championship lead from Marquez.

"Really unlucky today because I felt great on the bike and I was trying to manage the times in the race and waiting until the final laps, but this was the first time I had this problem with the machine," said Marquez, who was as close third behind Valentino Rossi and Dovizioso when the breakdown occurred, on lap 14 of 20.

"The engine was perfect, but suddenly when I arrived at the end of the straight the engine broke with some mechanical problem inside.

"I immediately [pulled the clutch in] because I felt the rear locking and at 300 kilometres per hour I did not want to fly. At the moment I was thinking about the championship.

"We had a small advantage before this race and as a rider you don't want to lose that small advantage in this way, but it is part of racing and it can happen."

The engine that failed was only introduced at Brno, a few weeks ago.

"Now we need to find out what happened for the future, because it was a fresh engine," Marquez confirmed.

Might the engine have been damaged during his big highside in Friday practice?

"No, the crash was on Friday and I was using this engine all weekend. They analyse everything and all the engines... It was working perfect in the race and the power was there," he said.

"I will think positive and the important thing is that we were there for a long time fighting for victory against Yamaha and Ducati.

"I was trying to manage the front tyre, which is our biggest problem when the temperatures are high. Valentino was not getting away, but when Dovi overtook me I started to realise that Dovi was the guy, because he was riding really good and the Ducati is working well in every circuit.

"So I started to control Dovi and I immediately overtook Viñales to stay with him."

Marquez is now nine points behind Dovizioso, with six rounds to go. Maverick Vinales is 13 points from the top, with Yamaha team-mate Valentino Rossi 26 points adrift.

"About the championship; before this race Dovi was already one of favourites and the main opponents and now he is leading and he is the rider with the most victories. So [I have to] control Dovi, try to control Viñales the top five riders, even Dani because they are in the fight for the title."


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