MotoGP championship leader Marc Marquez crashed his Honda at high speed but walked away unscathed on Sunday hours before the start of the Japanese Grand Prix, where he is bidding to make history.
Repsol Honda team rider Marc Marquez of Spain walks towards his pit as he prepares for the MotoGP-class qualifying session ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix, at the Twin Ring Motegi circuit, on October 26, 2013
The 20-year-old lost control during pre-race free practice at turn 12 of the Motegi circuit, sliding over the gravel and tumbling several times.
But the Spaniard was able to get up and walk unaided, before riding back to the pits on the back of a scooter. He resumed the practice session about 10 minutes later.
Marquez could become the youngest ever MotoGP world champion and first rookie title winner for 35 years on Sunday, although his compatriot Jorge Lorenzo can still catch him mathematically.
Yamaha's Lorenzo starts in pole, while Marquez is second on the grid.
Conditions at the mountainous Motegi circuit were dry and sunny on Sunday, after dense fog and torrential rain forced the cancellation of free practice on Friday and Saturday. An overnight earthquake also frayed competitors' nerves on Saturday.
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