The countdown to the first World Superbike Championship event of the season gets underway this week as Phillip Island hosts the final round of testing for several teams.

Four days have been set aside for a number of outfits, including each manufacturer backed entry, to fine-tune their machines ahead of the opening round at the same circuit on March 1st.

Split into two sessions, two days (17th/18th February) will be dedicated to testing for the Aprilia team (Shinya Nakano, Max Biaggi), Stiggy Honda (Leon Haslam, Roberto Rolfo), Kawasaki (Broc Parkes, Makoto Tamada), DFX Ducati (Regis Laconi) and Althea Honda (Tommy Hill).

In addition, Anthony West and Gianluca Vizziello of Stiggy Racing and Mark Aitchison and Matthieu Lagriive of Althea Honda will be present in the Supersport class.

The following week (21st/22nd February) will see the remainder of the factory teams, Ducati Xerox (Michel Fabrizio, Noriyuki Haga), Yamaha (Ben Spies, Tom Sykes), Ten Kate Honda (Carlos Checa, Ryuichi Kiyonari, Jonathan Rea), Suzuki (Max Neukirchner, Yukio Kagayama) and BMW (Troy Corser, Ruben Xaus), out on track.

Yamaha and Triumph will also be present with their Supersport teams.

Official free practice for the race weekend gets underway on February 27th 2009.

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