World Superbike Championship newcomer Alex Lowes says all the pressure is on his Voltcom Crescent Suzuki team-mate Eugene Laverty this season.
Irishman Laverty won nine races last season on his way to the runner-up spot in the championship behind Tom Sykes and Lowes feels the former factory Aprilia rider will shoulder the weight of expectation in 2014.
However, Lowes – last year's British Superbike champion – has set himself a personal goal of finishing on the rostrum in his rookie season in the series on the Yoshimura-powered GSX-R1000.
“My first goal is to get as close to my team-mate as possible; he obviously finished second in the World Championship last year so he's a great target for me,” he said.
“My goal is to get on the podium and I want to do that as soon as possible. I don't feel any pressure, the pressure is all on my team-mate.
“I had a great year last year in the British Superbike Championship so I want to have some fun, do my best and see where we end up.
“I've got quite a lot to learn coming from the British Superbike Championship but it's going well, I'm enjoying it and looking forward to the start of the season,” Lowes told the official World Superbike website.
“I can't wait to get to Phillip Island. My twin brother has raced there quite a few times and it's one of his favourite tracks and I think I'll get on with it and really enjoy it.”
Lowes has impressed during the pre-season tests at Almeria and Portimao, topping the times in Portugal on his maiden visit to the circuit to take the top spot ahead of Laverty on the unofficial time sheets, with Pata Honda's Jonathan Rea third fastest.
The 23-year-old from Lincoln will be making his debut at Phillip Island in February but Lowes is relishing the prospect of competing at the legendary Australian circuit.
“It's not long to the first race now – it's a new experience for me and a new track as well and I can't wait to get there,” he said.
“We're working on a few areas and we've new suspension this year due to a slight rule change and obviously the electronics package is improving all the time.
“Obviously I need to improve as well and I've been working really hard to do that.”
The official launch of the Voltcom Crescent Suzuki team will take place at its headquarters in Verwood, Dorset on Wednesday.
The event, which is open to the public, is scheduled to commence at 7pm.