Max Neukirchner returns to the Valencia circuit where he came within one corner of a debut WSBK victory last season, only to be left with a broken collarbone instead.

The injury was sustained after Carlos Checa made a do-or-die attack into the final turn of race one, bringing them both down and handing victory to a surprised Lorenzo Lanzi.

Neukirchner, who eventually took his first WSBK win two rounds later at Monza, returns to Valencia holding third in the 2009 standings - despite crashing out of race one at Qatar then collecting a subdued sixth in race two.

"I had too many crashes in Qatar and I don't want that to happen again in Valencia," said the Suzuki Alstare Brux rider. "Last year in Valencia I was on the verge of taking my first ever WSBK victory until the very last corner of the very last lap. Then I was hit by Carlos Checa and crashed, breaking my collarbone in the process.

"As that happened in the first race, it meant that I also missed the second race, so it wasn't a good end to what had been a very good weekend up to that moment. Valencia is quite a technical circuit and one that is quite hard physically because you hardly get any chance to rest on a lap.

"But I like the track and my goal is to finish both races and get on the podium," he declared.

Team-mate Yukio Kagayama arrives at round three just tenth in the points and also aiming for a rostrum return.

"The last round in Qatar was also not so good for me and so I want to do much better in Valencia," said Kagayama, who scored just one point in the Middle East. "The track is not a difficult one, but it is not an easy one either because is quite tough on the body. It is the kind of track where you must be very fit and concentrate strongly every lap.

"I like it though and want to get my season back on track by being able to chase the podium again. I am not so sure about the new Superpole system, but it is the same for everybody and it is up to all of us to get on with it and make the best we can," he added.