Jorge Lorenzo says he knew he had no answer to Dani Pedrosa's Aragon pace but insists second place still constitutes a fantastic result in terms of his title ambitions.
The 2010 MotoGP champion led in the opening stages but could not live with Pedrosa once the Honda rider pounced on lap six.
Lorenzo's points lead was cut by five as a result, but he remains 33 ahead of Pedrosa with four races remaining. He can therefore clinch the title simply by finishing third or better in all subsequent rounds, even if Pedrosa wins each time.
Given the mathematical implications, Lorenzo said he was perfectly content with his race, even if Pedrosa was able to pull away.
"For me second place is really good for the championship," he explained.
"We have to try and improve the bike to be more competitive in Japan, but we're in a good place to win the championship.
"At the beginning of the race I pushed at the maximum to secure second place and go away from the others, but Dani caught me little by little and had much faster pace.
"At that moment I knew I couldn't do the same pace as I had in the first three laps - maybe I lost too much energy and tyre.
"I almost crashed because I wanted to follow Dani - a mistake at Turn 1 - but it was impossible.
"We're racing for the championship though, nothing more."