Puccetti Kawasaki rider Lucas Mahias believes the Jerez WorldSBK test was a significant step forward after being sidelined for almost four months. 

The former 2017 WorldSSP champion missed the final four rounds of 2021 due to a scaphoid injury that, although worsened following a crash in Catalunya and therefore required surgery, actually began to cause the Frenchman issues at Assen (round five). 

The two-day test at Jerez was Mahias’s first pain-free riding since that point as he completed 1.5 days of running. 

Like factory KRT rider Alex Lowes, Mahias chose not to complete the full two days and instead save a half day for later in the season - every rider and team is allocated ten days of testing for the year. 

Mahias, who wrapped up his on-track action on Thursday morning, was slowest on both days, however, the gap between himself and Lowes come the end of play was just two tenths, a margin that was a full second at the same circuit last season. 

The 32 year-old believes the main area of improvement came from the new Ohlins suspension (previously used Showa) he tested aboard the ZX-10RR, calling it a ‘huge step forward’. 

Speaking after his return to action, Mahias added: "It was a very nice test. It's a good feeling to be back on the bike after a four-month break. The feeling on the bike with the new suspension is also great. It's the first test, but it's already a huge step forward for me. 

"So I'm all the more excited about the next test, to see whether the good feeling will be confirmed on a different race track or not. 

"I think we're on the right track. I also didn't fall and didn't have any pain in my wrist. The atmosphere in the team is really good and I couldn't be happier."