The MX3 World Championship title is the highlight of his career so far. For Matthias, the title of MX3 World Champion is almost comparable to his Dakar title. The entrepreneur Wolfgang Hillinger, his supporter and good friend, backs Matthias for 5 years and continues to do so.
The key day is the tenth stage. Matthias makes the right choice in navigation on the decisive note and secures a lead of 45 minutes. He maintains his lead the finish and on January 20th, 2018 he makes Austrian sports history: Matthias wins the 40th edition of the most legendary and certainly toughest rally in the world.
Without any expectations, Matthias makes his comeback. After 14 exhausting stages he is grateful to receive the Bedouin on the podium for the second place in Buenos Aires. A very emotional moment.
His second appearance at the Rally Dakar ends abruptly. A heavy crash on the seventh stage forces him to give up. After a femur fracture he receives life-saving surgery still in Bolivia and enters long months of rehabilitation at the Red Bull Training- and Diagnostic Center.
Already in his first year competing at the World Rally Championship, Matthias crowned his second World Champion title. Unexpectedly and very surprisingly, he wins the overall ranking of the FIM Rallye Raid Series. At his first Dakar appearance, food poisoning forces him to give up. A victory of the third stage, however, confirms his great potential.
The closure of the MX3 class obliges Matthias to change. Following the advice from his mentor Heinz Kinigadner he experiments with rallying and conducts a short first training in Morocco. Only a few weeks later, he wins his first race, the Hellas Rally in Greece. Kinigadner sees Matthias’ talent and supports his rally ambitions.