Marc Marquez hopes to put his frightening Phillip Island near miss behind him and return to the podium this weekend at Sepang in Malaysia.

The MotoGP world champion was fortunate to stay upright after he was struck from behind by Johann Zarco at the end of the Gardner straight. Marquez was forced to retire from the race as his run of bad luck at the Australian round continued.

Following his previous premier class title successes in 2014, 2016 and again this year, Marquez has failed to finish at Phillip Island.

“I don’t know, it’s difficult (to explain) but it means that we won in Motegi! But apart from the joke, Phillip Island was the same because we had a good race pace but in that first corner we can feel really lucky, me and Johann, because it was a very strange crash,” Marquez said.

“When you arrive there (Turn 1) with MotoGP, you understand that sometimes with the slipstream, sometimes the wind is pushing; it’s true that he didn’t stop the bike but it’s also true that I go a little bit wide on the left side, so I didn’t expect him there because normally you overtake in the inside. Lucky that both of us were okay, he apologised, and now it is time to think about Malaysia.

“We will try to continue in the same way because in Phillip Island we struggled a little bit but then on the race we were in a good shape, so we will try to keep our performance.”

Ducati boasts a strong record at Sepang and although Marquez enjoyed a solid pre-season test at the circuit on the Repsol Honda, he says he is starting with a clean slate from FP1.

“The pre-season has been very good here, the race pace, but now it is completely different – different conditions, different bikes, different set-ups – so forget pre-season and concentrate for this weekend,” he said.

“It is true that normally Ducati is in a very good level in Malaysia but you never know – it is not one of the best circuits but also Motegi was not one of the best circuits but in the end we were able to fight for the victory. We will try to start in a good way from FP1, try to work hard and then after warm-up we will see if we can fight for the podium, top five or maybe the victory, you never know.”