Michael van der Mark is eager to return to action at Magny-Cours this weekend for Pata Yamaha having watched on from the sidelines as Valentino Rossi’s back-up at the Aragon MotoGP last weekend.

The Dutch rider had initially been set for a MotoGP debut as stand-in for Rossi at Aragon but the Italian made a remarkable recovery from a double fractured leg to race last weekend, denying van der Mark his one-off opportunity for the Movistar Yamaha squad.

Despite not feeling too disheartened as a spectator last weekend in Spain, van der Mark is relishing the final three rounds of the World Superbike championship for Pata Yamaha having clinched his maiden podium for the team last time out at Portimao.

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“I cannot wait to get back on my Pata Yamaha R1 at Magny-Cours,” van der Mark said. “It is a circuit I really like and I think it will really suit the characteristics of the R1.

“Portimao was a good weekend for me and it was great to get my first Yamaha podium, which is the least the team and Yamaha deserve after all their hard work this season.

“A result like that can give you confidence, as you know you belong on the podium, plus we worked on a few things at the test that, we believe, mean we can arrive at most tracks with a good base setup and hit the ground running on Friday's.

“After everything that has been going on, I am looking forward to getting back to business at Magny-Cours and, as always, I will give it my all.”

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"Tonight Matthew, I'm going to be Valentino Rossi!" Oh no you're not. Shame for the lad, must be agonising to have got so close to those hallowed footrests. But if he can plonk that Pata Yam on the top step a few times his chance may come again.