Andrea Dovizioso says he feels comfortable riding in close quarters with Marc Marquez after the duo served up another thrilling final lap battle in Thailand.

Marquez turned the tables on Dovizioso to come out on top as their battle for the victory went down to the final corner, with the Ducati rider running wide on the exit after diving underneath Marquez at the last corner.

Both riders have a lot of mutual respect for one another and Dovizioso said that while it is easy to make a mistake in such high-stakes encounters, he always tries to ride in a ‘safe’ way.

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“It is not easy because we are on the limit and it is easy to make a mistake or to be more aggressive than what you have to do,” said the Italian rider.

“I am always trying all my career to do that (harness aggression) and it has happened with Marc and with most other riders, because I am not that rider to try and create a problem. Yes, I can be aggressive but not over, and it is good when the race is like that: a lot of overtaking but try to be in the safe way. I’m happy if we continue like this.”

Dovizioso said he fared better than he expected in the race at the Chang International Circuit in Buriram, when he was able to manage the high level of tyre degradation as the race progressed.

“It was a bit better than what we expected because, yes, the speed was there with a good grip, but in this kind of race and in this kind of track where the consumption is very high, what we understood in Aragon worked here,” said Dovizioso, whose podium on Sunday was his fifth in a row.

“That is one of the reasons why we fight until the last corner with Marc, because we worked in the right way during the weekend to improve the set-up and we also worked on some other things, and it was good for the tyre.

“I was able to struggle until the end but not be in a completely different situation to Marc, which happened in some other races. Bad to lose the victory in the last corner for sure but the championship is almost over and we are not racing for that, we are racing to try and make the maximum result and developing the bike for next year,” he added.

“I am really happy to have another four races and continue to work and try to improve a little bit because we need that if we really want to fight for the championship next year.”

Dovizioso is on course to finish second in the MotoGP World Championship behind Marquez, who will have his first chance to clinch the title in the next round at Motegi in Japan.

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