In the year that many predicted he would challenge for the 2010 World Superbike Championship title, Noriyuki Haga faces being eliminated from the official running three rounds before its conclusion this weekend.
Haga enters the tenth round of the season at Silverstone 180 points behind series leader Max Biaggi meaning the Italian needs just 20 points more than the Ducati rider to seal the inevitable and drop him out of any kind of contention.
Nonetheless, in the short-term, Haga is looking forward to returning to the British circuit having enjoyed success there in the past, albeit on the former layout.
“We haven't been to Silverstone for a few years but we've heard that they've made some great track modifications and I'm looking forward to going back there,” he said. “I've had some good results there in the past, quite a few podiums from what I remember and it was always a track that seemed to suit my riding style. We'll have to wait and see just how much it's changed but I'm looking forward to the event and hope we can do well.”
Team-mate Michel Fabrizio, meanwhile, has an altogether less successful record at Silverstone having managed just a single 15th place finish in three starts. Nonetheless, he is hopeful he can continue his steady rise back up the WSBK order this weekend.
“I've raced at Silverstone before of course but my results were nothing to write home about. With the changes to the track layout it will be interesting to see how everyone goes, I guess we'll all be starting on a level playing field, and so I am confident that we can put together two great races.
“I hoped to do better at the recent Brno round and so will try my best to take as many points as possible this weekend to improve my position in the overall standings.”