Jonathan Rea says it’s ‘exciting’ to head into his first opportunity to complete a historic third consecutive World Superbike title but is focusing on a strong race regardless of any championship outcomes.

The two-time and reigning World Superbike champion can clinch the 2017 crown if he outscores Kawasaki team-mate Tom Sykes by five points and doesn’t conceded any more than 12 points to Chaz Davies in race one at Magny-Cours. Considering Rea has only failed to finish on the podium on one occasion all season the odds are in his favour to seal a famous third title on the bounce in Saturday’s opening race with five races to spare.

Rea has continued to dominant the field during Friday free practice at the French round by topping the timesheet by over half a second from nearest rival Pata Yamaha’s Michael van der Mark while producing impress long run pace during FP2.

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With the weather forecast predicting a wet qualifying and race one, Rea is refusing to take any result for granted but is relishing his first chance to grab the title and become the first rider to win three consecutive World Superbike championships in history.

“We just put the package together today and the bike is working really well,” Rea said. “I am just trying to understand which one of all the tyre options that Pirelli have brought here to use for tomorrow. I think we have a good idea of that already.

“I am feeling good for long distance and for a one-lap attack. Whatever happens with the weather tomorrow we have to be ready because it is the first opportunity we can have to win this championship. That is exciting for me but the target is to focus on the first race itself and do the best possible job I can.”