Fiat Yamaha's Valentino Rossi only needs to finish fourth at this weekend's penultimate MotoGP round at Sepang to lift the title even if team-mate and championship rival Jorge Lorenzo wins the race.
The Spaniard effectively handed the title to Rossi when he crashed out of the Phillip Island round on the first corner, taking Marlboro Ducati's Nicky Hayden with him. He is now 38 points in arrears with only 50 points left up for grabs.
“We have the first match point for the championship. After Jorge’s mistake at Phillip Island we have a good advantage. But we have to treat this like a normal race, especially in practice, because I like this track a lot and have had great results and races here in the past," said The Doctor.