What Has Austin Mahone Feeling The Heat From Ariana Grande?

The 'Banga Banga' singer opens up to MTV News about his fierce EMA competition.

The race is on! And, if the Mahomies want Austin Mahone to take home a 2013 MTV EMA trophy on Sunday, they’d better keep voting.

Currently, the 17-year-old is battling it out against Ariana Grande in the first-ever Artist on the Rise Award Presented by new 5 Focus gum. As of press time, only hundreds of votes separated the two young stars, who are nearing 4 million votes each. They’re also competing against Lorde, Cher Lloyd, Cody Simpson and Bridgit Mendler for the prize.

“I mean, my fans have been going extremely, extremely hard,” Mahone told MTV News about the stiff competition. “There’s been incredible people on there. It’s really neck-and-neck right now between me and [Ariana].Like I’ll check it in an hour and I’ll be up by like 4,000, and then I’ll check back in a couple hours and she’ll be up by like 3,000. So it’s just, it’s like back and forth. So I mean everybody on that roster deserves to win. I’m just happy to be at the EMA.”

You can vote in the Artist on the Rise Award using Twitter, Instagram and Vine for all five artists using these hashtags: Lorde (#votelorde), Ariana Grande (#votearianagrande), Austin Mahone (#voteaustinmahone), Cher Lloyd (#votecherlloyd), Cody Simpson (#votecodysimpson) and Bridgit Mendler (#votebridgitmendler). Keep up with the competition at ArtistOnTheRise.MTV.com.

Of course, in addition to the nomination, the “Banga Banga” singer will also take the stage in New York for a special EMA performance kicking off at 7 p.m. ET/PT on show day, November 10. It will also feature The Wanted and Fall Out Boy, among others.

“I’m just happy to be there and I’m performing. I’m just excited,” he added. “I’m excited about life. It’s been great so far. My fans are the best.”

Mahone, who won a Moonman at the 2013 VMAs back in August, is also up for Best Push. In that category, he’s up against Karmin, Rudimental, Imagine Dragons, A$AP Rocky, Bastille, Bridgit Mendler, Tom Odell, Iggy Azalea, Icona Pop and Twenty One Pilots.

“It’s definitely an amazing feeling, just being nominated for that is incredible,” he shared last month about that EMA nomination . “Hopefully my fans will help me get that one too and we’ll just keep going hard. And I wouldn’t be doing this without them, so I owe it all to my fans.”

Fans can vote for EMA categories such as Best New, Best Live and more at MTVEMA.com or m.mtvema.com on their mobile phones. Voting for EMA categories is open now until 11:59PM CET on November 8. The 2013 MTV EMA take place on November 10 at 7 p.m. ET/PT on MTV.