Mahias: "I really wanted to win the race to become champion"

Monday, 6 November 2017 12:15 GMT

2017 WorldSSP champion reflects on stunning race and season

Lucas Mahias (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP Team) continues to reflect on an emotional Acerbis Qatar Round, as the French rider was crowned FIM Supersport World Champion under the floodlights of Losail International Circuit.

Responding well to the pressuring surrounding him over the weekend, Mahias was able to get a stunning start to the race and was locked in a classic WorldSSP battle. With a clear fast pace on board the YZF-R6, the French rider wasn’t backing down despite riding with the title on the line and took the battle for the race victory down to the final lap. Alongside Jules Cluzel (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda), the two riders were hungry for victory but it was Mahias crossed the line the victor by 0.023s. Taking his second victory of the season and first pole position, it was a perfect weekend for Mahias, who was overwhelmed by the result.

"It is an incredible feeling,” beamed Mahias. “I started riding properly ten years ago and if you had said to me then I would be the WorldSSP Champion I would have said it was impossible but I have worked hard these last ten years and now it has still hasn't sunk in yet! The race was really difficult, because all the different outcomes were going through my head Should I push or not push? I obviously didn't want to crash but, if I am honest, I really wanted to win the race to become champion as that is much better. It is an incredible feeling, I am very, very happy! Thank you to Yamaha, the whole of the GRT Team, and my family. I also want to say congratulations to Kenan for an awesome season, to finish second in the championship after his two big crashes and to come here and even be able to ride, let alone finish on the's incredible! I am not stupid, if Kenan did not crash at the beginning of the year and at Magny-Cours, I would have finished second in the championship, but this is racing and I am just happy to be champion!"

Send your congratulations using #MAH1AS on social media, or relive his championship winning season all on the WorldSBK VideoPass.