Cal Crutchlow, who wrapped up the British supersport Championship one round early, has signed to race for Rizla in 2007 on their Suzuki GSX-R1000.

The talented 20-year-old was keen to make the step up to the prestigious British Superbike Championship after his awesome run in the Supersport class where he won six out of 12 races to lift the title. He was inundated with offers of rides but felt that Rizla Suzuki would offer him the best package to further his career.

"You just have to look down the years to see the impressive results that Suzuki has achieved to understand why I wanted so badly to ride for this team," explained Crutchlow. "From Supersport to Superbike Championship success, Suzuki has achieved it all in Britain and now the Rizla Suzuki Superbike squad has a direct link to the Rizla Suzuki MotoGP team as well.

"I respect Rizla Suzuki enormously, it is a big team with a massive presence in the Championship and there is a real buzz of excitement about it. I want to be part of that success story and win with the Rizla Suzuki team in BSB."

Crutchlow is set to bring a new youthful outlook to the team who are eagerly anticipating working with him. Before chasing up his racing dreams, Crutchlow turned down a lucrative contract with Coventry City FC to play professionally for them.

"Having a professional team supporting you is one of the most important ingredients for success and I know I'll get that with Rizla Suzuki," continued Crutchlow, "Simon Buckmaster as the new Team Manager is a big bonus for me as I won the Supersport Championship with him this year and he is the best you can get. It couldn't be any better for me."

The team with their new signing will make their debut at the Race of the Year at Mallory Park this weekend. He will ride a Superbike for the very first time on Friday in a private Rizla Suzuki test at the 1.39-mile long Leicestershire track before racing it on Sunday.

"I'm being thrown in at the deep end but can't wait to get riding," enthused Crutchlow, "I've never ridden a Superbike before so it is going to be all new. There is a lot more that you can alter on the set-up of a Superbike than a Supersport bike so I am going to be on a steep learning curve for the Race of the Year.

"I am under no pressure to perform at the races. This is my debut and it is most important I learn and adapt. I can't wait to feel the power of a Superbike under me; it's going to be an interesting weekend at a circuit which is close to my home. I hope some of my local fans will come along and cheer me on."

New Team Manager Simon Buckmaster is thrilled to have secured Crutchlow as one of two riders for 2007. He said: "Cal has already proved he can win and is without doubt one of Britain's best upcoming riders. We will take very good care of him at Rizla Suzuki and aim to nurture that talent through to winning races and challenging for Superbike titles. Cal and Rizla Suzuki together have the tools and ability to go a long way."

Before starting his British Superbike career, Crutchlow had a weekend off at Magny-Cours, he told Crash.net Radio "I've come to support my friends Craig Jones, Stuart Easton, Chris Walker and JT. I've had a great weekend really I've just enjoyed it and relaxed, just had a bit of craic really. I really enjoy watching the World series and I do follow it closely, you have to in the racing game."