WSS Qatar: Van der Mark signs out in style

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Michael van der Mark has signed off his career in the World Supersport championship in style, taking the win easily in Qatar to complement his world title and maintain a podium record of almost 100%.

He made a break away early at the front, and after that his rivals never had a chance again, leaving the Dutchman to take the flag 3.5 seconds ahead of surprise second placed man Ratthapark Wilairot on the PTR Honda.

Wilarot, a former 250c and Moto2 rider with experience of the track, has had a good weekend all round, although his teammate Jack Kennedy was less lucky, forced out of the battle for third with an oil leak.

Jules Cluzel was third, locking out second in the championship with his result, with French wildcard Lucas Mehias fourth and Kev Coghlan fifth, giving the Scottish man fifth in the title too.

Speaking after the race, Van Der Mark said: “It’s my first time on the track, but the bike was working just perfectly! It wasn’t an easy race, because the guys behind were pushing hard; I think I did fourteen or fifteen laps on exactly the same time. It’s a nice finish to the season for the team, so now we can make a little party!”

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Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer