British Motorsport Promoters have unveiled a sponsorship package with publishing giant EMAP Automotive designed to build upon the already popular British Superbike and support race programme.

The partnership with EMAP, publishers of the UK's most successful bike magazines, was unveiled at today [Thursday]'s official series launch, and has been set up to co-publicise and co-promote the BSB. The agreement will use EMAP's extensive range of titles to promote the series and its support package, with Motor Cycle News becoming title sponsor of the BSB itself.

The weekly newspaper, which will be given a revamp to coincide with the deal, will be the headline partner of the Britain's leading domestic bike series, and will attempt to keep race fans u[ to date with pre- and post-race coverage and features. Sister publications MCN Sport, Bike, Ride, Performance Bikes, What Bike and MCN Bike Mart Fortnightly will also be supporting the series through editorial, competitions, features and special offers.

"We are delighted to welcome EMAP Automotive back to the British Superbike Championship," commented BSB series director Jos Foulston, "To have such a formidable media partner on board for 2002 not only underlines the importance of the series in the UK, but also provides us with a fantastic opportunity to promote Britain's premier motorcycle championship to over 1.2million readers.

"Through EMAP Automotive's motorcycle portfolio, we will not only be able to promote the championship to the army of fans that come trackside each race weekend, but we will also be able to reach those who have a passion for motorcycling and may not yet have experienced the excitement of the series."

In addition to the headline support given by MCN to the BSB, Performance Bikes will also back the National Superstock class, giving extended coverage to a category seen as a key feeder series for the BSB and a nurturing ground for stars of the future.

"Motor Cycle News and EMAP are delighted to be renewing their association with the British Superbike Championship," concluded company MD Rob Munro-Hall, "The 2002 season promises some fantastic racing, and we're proud to be a part of this important series in what we all hope will be an unforgettable year."