Bradley Smith admits he's been 'thrown in at the deep end' following confirmation that he will spearhead Yamaha's factory effort at the Suzuka 8 Hours in July with his MotoGP team-mate Pol Espargaro.

The British rider is making his debut at the legendary race in July, which is held in the highest regard by the Japanese.

The Yamaha Factory Racing Team also includes All Japan Road Race champion Katsuyuki Nakasuga as the trio aim to give Yamaha's all-new YZF-R1 Superbike victory in the prestigious race this summer.

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"Very little," said Smith, asked what he knew about endurance racing.

"I know that fuel consumption is key. That's all I know at the moment. Obviously I don't know the bike, I don't know the tyres, strategies, pit-stops - it's all throwing me in at the deep end.

"But I do know how to ride a motorcycle fast, so that's basically why I've been hired to do the job."

Although rumours had been circulating for some time that the MotoGP duo were in line to contest the event for Yamaha, Smith said he was only contacted about competing in the race following the Jerez MotoGP.

"Rumours started coming out around Austin, actually before any contact was made with me. That was after Jerez," said Smith, who says he hasn't given too much thought yet to any potential concerns over safety at Suzuka.

"It's not really something I think about. I've been riding at a karting track in Spain that has a wall here and a wall there and a tyre wall there. It's not the brightest idea," he said.

"At the end of the day, we have a safety commission for a reason, we're improving the sport. But I believe we don't go to Suzuka for other reasons than safety.

"But I'm not worried. We all know the point that everyone is worried about."