Prevented from riding in the British Superbike Championship by his team's financial struggle, Steve Plater will compete in this weekend's World Supersport round at Brands Hatch, after accepting an offer to ride alongside Australian, Adam Fergusson, in the Alpha Technik squad.

Plater will also continue with the World Supersport team until the end of the season but, with only one date clash between the world and domestic championships, the 31-year-old may well contest selected rounds of the British Superbike series aboard Team Kawasaki's factory ZX-7RR, should sufficient funds materialise to resurrect the season.

Already an accomplished Supersport rider before joining Team Kawasaki, Plater has, under the tutelage of former grand prix and world endurance rider Simon Buckmaster, developed into one of the best racers in Britain; a fact borne out by his being offered a world championship ride so late in the season.

"To be offered the chance to move up to the world level with an established team is fantastic, although I'm obviously disappointed not to be seeing out the season with Team Kawasaki," Plater, runner-up in the 1999 British Supersport Championship, said, "Kawasaki have given me the green light to accept the Supersport ride but, if the team manage to resolve the problems that saw it withdraw from last weekend's British Superbike round, there's a good chance I'll also ride the factory ZX-7RR Superbike at
selected BSB rounds this season.

"I'm really looking forward to the weekend ahead. I've raced on the Brands Hatch GP circuit already this season, but I haven't ridden a Supersport 600 since the end of last year. I won't get the chance to test the bike before official practice gets underway on Friday but, if I can get back into the groove during practice and qualifying, then I'm hopeful of a good result on race day."

Although disappointed to lose the services of one of the key players in Kawasaki's success this season, team boss Buckmaster knows that the move to the world series is a good one for his charge.

"Since moving up to the British Superbike championship with Kawasaki at the start of the 2000 season, Steve has built a reputation for being one of the hardest riders in the domestic series," he said, "The fact that Steve has been offered the chance to move up to the World Supersport championship comes as no surprise, as riders of his calibre are few and far between.

"Whilst we are working hard to ensure that Team Kawasaki return to the British Championship at Knockhill, we felt it only fair that, with main sponsor funding for the team still to be confirmed, we release Steve to ride for the Alpha Technik squad for the remainder of the season. He has done a tremendous job for Kawasaki since joining the team in 1999 and the legions of enthusiastic Kawasaki fans have certainly taken him to their hearts. We wish him all the best as he steps up to compete against the best riders in the world."