Top 10 BSB Rider of the Year 2011: 5. Michael Rutter

Nationality: British Team: Rapid Bathams Ducati Bike: Ducati 1198 Wins: 0 Podiums: 3 Best finish: 2nd Championship points: 164 Championship position: 8th

The stalwart of British Superbike racing, the Michael Rutter of 2010 went a long way to reviving his reputation as the determined and dogged racer that has made him such a fan favourite since making his debut back in 1995.

Making the title Showdown in 2010 on the way to fifth place, though Rutter couldn't quite replicate that feat in 2011, there was still plenty for his fans to cheer about.

Sticking with Riders Ducati, now badged Rapid Bathams in a nod to its bold new sponsor, Rutter initially found himself bridging the gap between the leaders and the mid-field, the complex development of the bike's electronics' package proving both a step forward and a hindrance during the first-half of the season.

As ever, Rutter came into his own when the heavens opened, with his three podiums coming at Thruxton, Oulton Park and Brands Hatch in conditions that were certainly on the tricky side.

Those results, coupled to set of reasonable finishes during his mid-season march, gave Rutter a chance to make the Showdown for the second year in succession. Going head-to-head with Ryuichi Kiyonari, though Rutter began the crucial Cadwell Park event in arrears, many predicted he would emerge ahead by the end of the weekend.

Of course, Rutter's collision with Josh Brookes would scupper those hopes, despite his brave efforts to race on with broken ribs, but a return for the final round at least secured him a respectable eighth in the overall standings.

Turning 40 years-old next season, Rutter insists he is still determined to see out his career with a British Superbike title in his grasp. On the basis of his 2010 and 2011 performances, it may not be such an over-ambitious dream...

Top 10 BSB Rider of the Year 2010: 3rd Top 10 BSB Rider of the Year 2009: 16th Top 10 BSB Rider of the Year 2008: 7th

Top 10 BSB Rider of the Year 2011:

6. Jon Kirkham 7. Graeme Gowland 8. Josh Brookes 9. James Ellison 10. Glen Richards