The 2013 Superbike World Championship revs into action at the opening round on Phillip Island this weekend and British Eurosport will have unrivalled live coverage throughout the season, with terrestrial highlights on Channel 4.
Italian rider Max Biaggi claimed the 2012 WSBK title in his farewell season, finishing ahead of Britain’s Tom Sykes in the closest ever climax to a season with just half-a-point separating them after 28 races.
Aside from Sykes, the chances of a British champion are stronger than ever for 2013, with a field of five British riders looking to follow in the footsteps of former British champions Carl Fogarty, Neil Hodgson and James Toseland.
Honda’s Jonathan Rea aims to build on a successful 2012 season in which he finished fifth overall and also filled in for the injured Casey Stoner for two races in MotoGP.
He pairs up with fellow Briton Leon Haslam in the Pata Honda team.
Elsewhere, Aprilia star Eugene Laverty has taken over as the Italian team’s number one following the retirement of Biaggi.
The Northern Irishman will be hoping to mount a serious title challenge this year.
Last year’s runner-up Tom Sykes starts as championship favourite aboard his Kawasaki. Sykes and the rest of the British riders will take on a top class field in 2013 which includes former MotoGP riders Carlos Checa, Marco Melandri, Max Neukirchner and Syvain Guintoli.
British Eurosport will continue to televise the Superbike World Championship for the next three years, showing every round exclusively live in high definition on either British Eurosport or British Eurosport 2.
Coverage of the 2013 starts with Superpole from Phillip Island on Saturday, February 23 , followed by both World Superbike races, plus the Supersport race, in the early hours of Sunday, February 24.
The regular Eurosport commentary team of Jack Burnicle and James Whitham will guide viewers through the action.
Looking ahead to the season, Whitham said: “For me this season is going to be one of the best because of all the Brits.
“I honestly cannot see a non-Brit winning it and I haven’t said that since the days of Carl Fogarty.
“Tom Sykes starts as the Championship favourite. He was so unlucky to lose by half a point last year.
“He had a lot of bad luck during the season including being docked points and he didn’t make many mistakes that were his fault.
“I think he will cope with pressure this season.”
Later on Sunday, Tony Carter will then host a three-and-a-half hour live studio show on British Eurosport 2 reviewing all the action from the opening round, featuring full re-runs of both World Superbike races.
He will be joined in the studio by 2003 World Superbike champion Neil Hodgson, who will give his take on what lies ahead for the 2013 season and analysis on the opening two races of the championship.
Watch all the drama unfold as it happens all season long only British Eurosport and online via Eurosport Player.
Channel 4 will again screen free-to-air half-hour highlights of every round from the 2013 World Superbike Championship, produced by Sunset+Vine.
Each programme will air on the Saturday morning after each event, presented by Charlie Webster with commentary provided by Jonathan Green. Fans can catch up with the action from every round online via 4OD.
Round 1 – Phillip Island, Australia Saturday 23rd February WSBK Superpole – Start: 04:00 GMT LIVE: 4.00am-5.10am – British Eurosport Replay: 7.10am-8.10am – British Eurosport 2 Sunday 24th February WSBK Race 1 – Start: 01:00 GMT LIVE: 12.45am-2.00am – British Eurosport World Supersport Race LIVE: 2.00am-3.15am – British Eurosport WSBK Race 2 – Start: 04:30 GMT LIVE: 4.15am-5.30am – British Eurosport Round 1 Review Presented by Tony Carter, with guest Neil Hodgson 10.00am-1.30pm – British Eurosport 2 Saturday 2nd March FIM Superbike World Championship Highlights 7.25am-7.55am – Channel 4
All race weekends live on British Eurosport | Highlights on Channel 4 February 24-25 Round 1 – Phillip Island (AUS) April 13-14 Round 2 – Aragon (ESP) April 27-28 Round 3 – Assen (NED) May 11-12 Round 4 – Monza (ITA) May 25-26 Round 5 – Donington (EUR) June 8-9 Round 6 – Portimao (POR) June 22-23 Round 7 – Venue TBC June 29-30 Round 8 – Imola (ITA) July 20-21 Round 9 – Moscow Raceway (RUS) August 3-4 Round 10 – Silverstone (GBR) August 31-September 1 Round 11 – Nurburgring (GER) September 28-29 Round 12 – Laguna Seca (USA) October 5-6 Round 13 – Magny Cours (FRA) October 19-20 Round 14 – Jerez (ESP) November 16-17 Round 15 – Buddh Circuit (IND) …