Neil Hodgson has said that he can't wait to test his Yamaha R1 this week as he begins his preparations for his return to the British Superbike Championship.
The former World Superbike Champion has signed to race the Rob Mac Racing-prepared Motorpoint Yamaha in 2010, marking his first season competing in the national Superbike series since winning the title in 2000.
Hodgson's reappearance at BSB level comes after four seasons spent in the AMA Superbike series, a tenure in which he was unable to replicate his title-winning form from WSBK.
After a year spent mostly on the sidelines when a Motocross accident left him with a dislocated shoulder and a collapsed lung - an injury that continues to hamper him eight months on - Hodgson has elected for a new challenge switching from Honda in AMA to Yamaha in BSB.
"I am really excited and can't wait [to start testing]," he said in a web chat last week on the official BSB website, www.britishsuperbike.com
. "Testing starts for us soon and that is when we all get going.
"I am confident that the team learnt a lot from last year and we are improving the bike. The first thing we are going to do is try to make it lighter as it was a bit overweight.
"We are also hoping to get a factory swing arm too; these are the two main things we are starting with.
"Other than that we will wait and see what happens when we get testing, as I haven't ridden the Motorpoint Yamaha yet."
So what is his aim in 2010?
"I want to win races next year, that is for sure," he added. "I just I hope I don't let my fans down. I want to thank them for the continued support. I have had tough times in my career recently but I am excited about coming back to BSB.
"So come and see me in the paddock on a race weekend as I will sign anything apart from cheques!"