Pol Espargaro did everything he could by dominating the Phillip Island Moto2 race, but third place for Marc Marquez clinched the world championship for the future Honda MotoGP rider.
Marquez only needed two points from the final two rounds to secure the title. But he did not look like he planned to take it easy as his Monlau Suter burst into the lead for a few yards at the start.
Espargaro's Pons Kalex slipped back from pole to fourth during the first lap, but by the end of lap two the Spaniard was in the lead.
Up to a second per lap faster than his rivals, Espargaro was unstoppable in the race and won by a huge 16 seconds. Marquez had it all in hand, though. He spent most of the race sat in third place behind Scott Redding's Marc VDS Kalex.
Local favorite Anthony West joined them in the closing laps, as he rode a superb race for QMMF to break away from the large pack fighting for fourth. With nothing to lose and Australian pride to uphold, West battled past before Marquez and Redding into second place in the closing laps.
Marquez sat back in fourth until the final two corners, when he showed just how easy he had been taking it by shooting past Redding, then coming within 0.026sec of beating West over the line.
Dominique Aegerter eventually won the big dice fr fifth, ahead of Johann Zarco, Simone Corsi, Esteve Rabat, Randy Krummenacher and Takaaki Nakagami, who led much of lap one after a brilliant start. Mika Kallio was at the forefront of this group before a late clash with Corsi.
Second-row starter Tom Luthi drifted back then crashed, which was a relief for Andrea Iannone, his rival for third in the standings, who stopped with an apparent engine failure early on.
Results - 25 laps:
Pos Rider Team/Bike Time/Gap
1. Pol Espargaro Pons Kalex 39m26.486s
2. Anthony West QMMF Speed Up + 16.811s
3. Marc Marquez Monlau Suter + 16.837s
4. Scott Redding Marc VDS Kalex + 16.957s
5. Dominique Aegerter Technomag-CIP Suter + 26.018s
6. Johann Zarco JIR Motobi + 26.028s
7. Simone Corsi Ioda FTR + 26.091s
8. Esteve Rabat Pons Kalex + 26.372s
9. Randy Krummenacher Switzerland Kalex + 26.474s
10. Takaaki Nakagami Italtrans Kalex + 26.580s
11. Jordi Torres Aspar Suter + 36.520s
12. Bradley Smith Tech 3 + 36.565s
13. Toni Elias Italtrans Kalex + 36.870s
14. Xavier Simeon Tech 3 + 38.220s
15. Mike di Meglio Kiefer Kalex + 44.350s
16. Yuki Takahashi Forward FTR + 48.586s
17. Ricard Cardus Arguinano AJR + 48.763s
18. Nicolas Terol Aspar Suter + 48.768s
19. Ratthapark Wilairot Gresini Suter + 52.487s
20. Marcel Schrotter SAG Bimota + 52.569s
21. Gino Rea Gresini Suter + 52.707s
22. Tomoyoshi Koyama Technomag-CIP Suter + 1m12.087s
23. Alessandro Andreozzi Speed Master Speed Up + 1m21.455s
24. Elena Rosell QMMF Speed Up + 1 lap
25. Marco Colandrea SAG FTR + 1 lap
Mika Kallio Marc VDS Kalex 23 laps
Axel Pons Pons Kalex 23 laps
Julian Simon Avintia Suter 23 laps
Eric Granado JIR Motobi 23 laps
Thomas Luthi Paddock Suter 19 laps
Andrea Iannone Speed Master Speed Up 4 laps