Bimota Alstare Junior boss Benjamin Batta says he is realistic about his team's chances in the British Superbike Championship as it prepares to make its series debut at Thruxton.
The former World Superbike Championship-winning team has been heading up Bimota's manufacturer-backed return to the international series in 2014, but has indicated plans to expand into national series', beginning with three wild-card entries into BSB at Thruxton, Oulton Park and Cadwell Park.
Eighteen-year-old Christophe Ponsson has been signed to ride the BMW-powered BB3 Superbike, but while the Bimota has proven competitive on the world stage so far this year, Batta admits it would be too much to expect too much too soon in BSB.
"Our goal is to finish the races in the points, but we have to be realistic as BSB is a very tough Championship. You cannot arrive with an 18-year-old rider who doesn't know the circuits and with a bike that is at the very beginning of its development and expect to win. I have faith in Christophe and I am sure that BSB is the perfect place for him to grow.
“He has a high regard for the British Championship and it is not surprising that most riders are coming to WSBK from BSB. It should also be noted that teams in BSB show incredible enthusiasm - our team is a small structure but we are very dedicated and excited about this opportunity."
Ponsson, meanwhile, is looking forward to his BSB debut having picked up experience competing in the Superstock 1000 championship and most recently in the CEV Superbike series.
"I am glad to be joining BSB because I love this Championship and each race is important. I am sure I will become stronger from this experience because most of the top ten riders in the World Championship are either British or have raced before in BSB.
“It won't be easy to start with because I do not know the tracks and the other riders have a lot of experience, but I am looking forward to being one of the youngest riders on the grid. We are still learning with the Bimota and we have been working hard with the development; it is a very good bike so we are looking forward to the new challenge."