Bagnaia might have gained the championship in Sunday’s 20-lap Malaysian GP if he outscored Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo by 11 factors.
The Ducati rider did win the race, however Quartararo completed third to maintain his title hopes alive going to the ultimate spherical in Valencia, with 23 factors now the hole.
In current races it has change into obvious that Ducati has instructed its riders to watch out when racing with Bagnaia, however has stayed out of controlling battles for victories and podiums.
Whereas Ducati administration regarded pensive on the pitwall on Sunday at Sepang, Bastianini was seemingly given no directions to not race Bagnaia, with the Gresini rider battling exhausting and hounding his future team-mate to the chequered flag.
Bastianini admits he needed to decide any strikes on Bagnaia with the championship in thoughts, however says he by no means deliberately stayed behind the manufacturing facility Ducati rider on the final lap having been near a transfer on the surface of Flip 9.
Requested if he deliberate a last-lap assault on Bagnaia, Bastianini mentioned: “I used to be actually shut, particularly within the final lap, however I believe it was tough to catch him within the final a part of the observe and it was vital for me to stay near the primary.
“At Flip 9 I attempted to go up the within, nevertheless it was tough, so I went for the surface.
“Sure, I prefer to assault, however at all times cautious as a result of for Ducati this title is vital.
“I attempted to overhaul Pecco once more within the final lap nevertheless it was a little bit bit harmful.
“Generally now we have to see additionally the opposite questions, he battles for the championship and it’s like this.”
Enea Bastianini, Gresini Racing
Picture by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images
Bagnaia’s seventh win of the season means he merely wants to complete 14th in Valencia and might be champion regardless if Quartararo doesn’t win.
The Ducati rider leaped up from ninth on the grid to second on the first nook after taking a “threat” below braking for Flip 1, and inherited the lead on lap seven when poleman Jorge Martin crashed out at Flip 5.
Bagnaia admits Martin’s tempo in the beginning was an excessive amount of for him anyway, whereas noting the Bastianini battle was the “hardest” a part of the race.
“The response on the lights was actually nice but in addition the primary braking I risked a bit to be in entrance, and this helped me rather a lot to battle for the win,” Bagnaia mentioned.
“Jorge was with an unbelievable tempo in the beginning, forcing rather a lot, and after two laps attempting to observe him I simply mentioned I can loosen up a bit as a result of for me it was an excessive amount of.
“When he crashed, I simply tried to handle the tyres a bit, Enea was forcing rather a lot.
“It was one of many hardest components of the race when he overtook me, and it was fairly tough to observe him in the beginning as a result of he was with extra traction within the quick nook, I used to be with extra traction within the gradual corners.
“However I used to be braking so exhausting, so I believe the braking was the factor that helped me to win the race in the present day.”