Jason O’Halloran concedes his fitness at the physical Cadwell Park circuit “is still a bit of an known” but having battled for podium positions last time out at Thruxton sees no reason why he can’t fight at the front this weekend.

O’Halloran’s mid-season progress has been hampered by an ankle injury sustained while on stand-in duty for the factory Honda squad in World Superbikes but he has been making a steady return to full fitness.

Crash.net the longest-serving motorsport website in the world

At the last round at Thruxton, the Australian rider fought for the podium in both races but had to settle for a pair of sixth places at the Hampshire circuit. O’Halloran feels it is proof of his continued recovery but admits Cadwell Park will pose a bigger physical challenge.

“Thruxton overall was good for us and it showed the progress since the injury, but Cadwell Park is still a bit of an unknown given how physical it is, especially with the Mountain,” O’Halloran said. “I had a little spin there the other evening to test the ankle and we seemed okay, so we just need to take the weekend how it comes and see how we get on.

“The aim previously has always been podiums or wins, or at least a top-five and with the Showdown getting closer, we need to do everything to score the best we can.

“At Thruxton we proved that I haven’t lost the speed, it was just that the injury had been making it difficult.

“If you look at race one I was third into the Chicane and fighting with the lead group; I was pushed wide which cost me the podium.

“That shows what a massive step forward it has been since Brands Hatch just two weeks’ ago, so I am happy with the injury progress although you always want it to be faster.”

O’Halloran currently sits 10th in the Bennetts British Superbike championship but just 25 points splits him and Danny Buchan who holds the provisional final spot in the top six with five races remaining before the Showdown comes into play.