Max Biaggi and Team Alstare Suzuki Corona Extra head to this weekend's final World Superbike round at Magny Cours on a mission to lift the title.
Following the Italian's victory and second place at Vallelunga, he lies 29 points behind series leader James Toseland, but any slip-up by the Briton could give him a chance of taking the title.
Biaggi had his first ever outing on the GSX-R1000 at Magny-Cours at the end of last season so is no stranger to the track, but since then the bike has developed a lot so he will have to work hard to find a good set-up in practice and qualifying. Nonetheless he and the team are ready for the challenge and hoping to end the season on a high.Biaggi's team mate Yukio Kagayama is travelling to the French circuit but does not know if he will be able to race there this weekend: His injured right hand and knee caused him to pull out of last weekend's race at Vallelunga but the Japanese rider is determined to race at Mangy-Cours if he feels he can. He will go out on Friday morning practice and see how his injuries hold up before making a decision.
Max Biaggi, 'This will be an interesting weekend for sure and I will be doing my best to put pressure on Toseland throughout the weekend. He is an experienced rider, but anything can happen in racing and I want to be a position to capitalize on any mistakes. At least I am no stranger to Mangy-Cours, but the Suzuki is now very different to when I made my first test of it at the end of last season. For me, I will start my usual way of working with the bike's set-up and try and get it right for the race. I am confident that I can make some good results this weekend, but what will happen yet I do not know. We shall just have to see.'
Yukio Kagayama, 'I was very disappointed not to race last weekend, but even I realized that it would have been a pointless exercise. It is not as if I had been going for the title or second place, so there was no need for me to race and maybe crash again. Really, I should not race this weekend, but I want to if I can! I do not want to end the season sitting around the pits and doing nothing, because I am a racer and I want to race!'