Lucas Mahias has secured his maiden World Supersport title with a thrilling victory after a frantic race-long battle against Jules Cluzel, while Kenan Sofuoglu gritted his way to a valiant third place on his comeback from injury.

With 11th place or higher ultimately being enough for the GRT Yamaha rider to seal the title in Qatar, pole-sitter Mahias showed no plans of easing to the title as he tussled for the lead with risky passes on Cluzel and team-mate Federico Caricasulo in the opening stages.

Further back defending champion Sofuoglu made a tentative start the race down in ninth place but gradually worked his way up the order on lap record pace. Despite his best efforts, the Turkish rider ran out of laps to catch the breakaway of Mahias and Cluzel which effectively meant the title race was over.

Sofuoglu will received huge credit for his efforts by reaching the World Supersport podium just over a month from his triple hip fracture at Magny-Cours and fighting for the title despite having faint hope entering the season finale with a 20-point deficit.

With Mahias and Cluzel set for a final lap tussle for victory, while Mahias still needed to finish the race to confirm the title, the GRT Yamaha rider demonstrated his world crown credentials by getting the better of Cluzel into turn one on the final lap before defending against his fellow countryman for victory.

As Sofuoglu held third place Caricasulo had to settle for fourth to cap a dominant campaign for the factory Yamaha squad.


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