Alex Lowes admitted his nerves started jangling in the final stages of the Suzuka 8 Hours, but he needn't have worried as the Yamaha Factory Racing Team made it three wins in a row in the prestigious event.

Yamaha World Superbike rider Lowes and team-mates Michael van der Mark and Katsuyuki Nakasuga completed the event almost a lap clear of Kawasaki Team Green's Leon Haslam, Kazuma Watanabe and Azlan Shah Bin Kamaruzaman, securing an historic victory in the 40th running of the famous race in Japan.

Lowes' triumph - his second Suzuka 8 Hours success after he tasted victory last year when he replaced Bradley Smith in the team - will certainly have done his chances of earning a new Yamaha World Superbike contract in 2018 no harm.

The British rider was all smiles afterwards in the post-event press conference and said he is already looking forward to returning to Japan next summer.

"I'm very happy to win again and the Suzuka 8 Hours is a fantastic event. I was a bit nervous in the final hours but these two guys did a fantastic job.

"We had a bit of a lead, a bit of a gap, so then you get a little bit more nervous because it's easy to lose a bit of concentration. The Yamaha Factory Racing Team did a fantastic job, I really enjoyed the bike and I'm looking forward to going back again next year already."

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