Almost 365 days later and riders are preparing for the 4th to last race of the 2019 season at the Twin Ring Motegi for the Motul Grand Prix of Japan!
The championship title may have already been snagged by Spanish rider, Marc Marquez, but the points are tight for the remaining riders and they are as determined as ever.
So what happened last year during chapter 16 of the 2018 season?
Marc Marquez started from P6 on the grid and battled with Andrea Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow for 21 laps before jumping into 1st and taking the race win of the weekend.
Fellow Honda rider, Cal Crutchlow held his own and moved from P4 off the grid quickly into 3rd where he remained for a majority of the race until passing a low-slided Dovizioso in the 2nd to last lap and taking the 2nd podium position.
Rounding out the podium was Suzuki rider, Alex Rins who started from the 3rd row of the grid and had a classic “Rins underdog” race. To be more specific, he rode with an offensive mindset and strategically climbed his way through the pack and into P4 by the 15th lap.
Marquez won the race with a 1.573 second gap with the 2nd and 3rd place finishers only 0.147 seconds apart. The remaining riders came in 6+ seconds after Marquez crossed the checkered line and with that, Marquez earned his 7th World title.
All eyes ahead to Japan as the newly crowned World Champion continues to charge ahead, LCR Honda rider, Takaaki Nakagami rides his last race of the season before undergoing shoulder surgery and the battle for the remaining championship points continues to pan out.