I am living a dream. To be a MotoGP rider is one thing but to win the title five times is something no one can imagine, even if you are super talented and winning everything in the smallest category. MotoGP is the best riders in the world, there are 19 races, and it is so difficult to find the best level all season.

Since the first race of the season, I saw Ducati was the bike and team to fight for the title. The important points were Jerez and Le Mans. I won two races in a row, and Andrea Dovizioso and Jorge Lorenzo either crashed or didn't score many points. When you get a big advantage, everything is easier.

I was fast at every track. A bad race was second or third. We worked really hard in the preseason to achieve this consistency. That is what I learned last year from Dovi. He was really good at managing the situation. Honda did a great job. Sometimes I gave a little bit more to the bike, and sometimes the bike gave a little bit more to me.

I need to be careful. This year we started with a very competitive bike, and I crashed less than last year. To improve these statistics, I need to find another way to ride. Some of the crashes come when I first touch the gas and I lose the front. I need to keep the same riding style but find a way to get more feedback from the front tire.

Marc Márquez
Once a wild man, always a wild man? “This year, I felt more mature,” 2018 MotoGP world champion Marc Márquez admitted. “I will try to enjoy the last few races. I enjoy fighting for the victory; this is the way to ride.” The 25-year-old Spaniard now has seven world titles to his credit—one each in 125cc and Moto2, and five in MotoGP.Andrew Wheeler/automotophoto.com

I told myself, "I will try to win at Motegi." After Free Practice 4, I felt we were able to win. Qualifying wasn't good, but after morning warm-up, we reconfirmed. When we had a meeting with Emilio Alzamora, Alberto Puig, and Santi Hernandez—like every race—we tried to understand our real position. We saw we were able to fight for the victory.

After the warm-up, the president of Honda, Takahiro Hachigo, came to me and said, "You need to do it." I said, "Okay." Immediately, Alberto said, "It's just another race. Forget, forget." I know this is important for the Japanese but, honestly, I work better when I have pressure. I am more concentrated.

Winning the title in Japan
Winning the title in Japan with three races to go feels different than winning it at the final round in Spain. “Last year was much more stressful because I didn’t have the advantage,” Márquez said. “The pressure was higher, and the adrenaline when I achieved the title in Valencia was different.”Andrew Wheeler/automotophoto.com

I was really focused on the first lap. I knew that was the most important lap to overtake quickly and be behind Dovi; he was the man to beat. I tried to be patient. Dovi was riding in a strange way—sometimes pushing, sometimes slowing down—but I had something more in the end. I gave everything in the last four laps.

I didn't know anything about a celebration. [Aprilia Racing Team Gresini rider] Scott Redding stopped, I hugged him, and I felt something strange. I dislocated my shoulder. During the season, I dislocated it many times training at home. In December, I need to stop for [surgery with] Dr. Mir. Next year, it will be perfect.

I never think about records because every season is different. I have a two-year contract with Honda and for those two years I will try to fight for the championship. I know I will have the pressure like all top riders. If you finish second, it's a good season, but the goal is not achieved. As long as I stay here, I will try to increase the numbers.

Every season, I have pressure. I hope this will be my life until the end of my career, but now it is time to enjoy. We will celebrate in Australia. We will celebrate in Malaysia. We will celebrate in Valencia. And then, on the first of January, we will concentrate on the 2019 season and work harder to be better.