AND THE WORLD...
Round eight of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship moves north of the border this forthcoming weekend when the series makes its annual visit to the Knockhill circuit in Fife.
Looking to capitalise on a fantastic performance at the previous round at Oulton is Hydrex Bike Animal Honda ace James Ellison, who secured his second podium placing of the season last time out and is hoping to continue his good form in Scotland.
27 year old Ellison, from Kendal in Cumbria, has not visited the 1.3 mile hillside track which overlooks the Firth of Forth for four years but with recent developments aboard the Shaun Muir Racing Honda Fireblade, he is expected to again be running at the front from the word go.
"I'm looking forward to it like I am all the races now" said James. "I don't think the track has changed much since the last time I was there and it shouldn't be too hard to get a good base setting. The team is working hard and we are all moving forward, all we need now is that elusive win after a couple of second places. The bike is good and I'm feeling confident so I'm revved up for this weekend!"
Ellison's feel-good factor was increased further with the news that he will take to the grid for round eleven of the World Superbike Championship as a wildcard entry at the Donington Park round over the weekend of September 5/6/7th.
The former MotoGP racer will renew his rivalry with the likes of ex GP aces Max Biaggi, Carlos Checa and Makoto Tamada and after watching the recent action at Brands Hatch, he is confident of a good result.
"When the news came through that I was going to be riding in WSB at Donington, I was ecstatic!" enthused Ellison. "Everyone saw how competitive Tom Sykes was at Brands and he and I have had many good dices this year in BSB so hopefully that bodes well for us to get a good result."
Meanwhile team mate Guy Martin is hoping to turn his poor short-circuit form around and also to gain some much needed luck on the roads this month also.
The affable 26 year old from Kirmington in Lincolnshire has not scored points in the last three BSB meetings due to various problems but is looking to get some more on the board at Knockhill before he departs immediately after for the Ulster Grand Prix meeting.
At the Ulster GP in 2006, he won an amazing five races out of six and last year, despite the inclement weather, he took a victory and a second place to make him 'Man of the Meeting' again so if there's ever a meeting he needs to be going to, then it surely has to be the Dundrod track near Belfast.
"We'll see what we can do at Knockhill and if the bike's good, then there's no reason we can't get a good result. But the main focus for me over the next couple of weeks has got to be the Ulster GP as after the problems we had at the North West, TT and Southern 100, I need a result. I love the Ulster Grand Prix course, it's as good if not better than the Isle of Man TT and it's far better than the North West 200 course. He who laughs last laughs longest and that's what I'm hoping for now!"
Also racing will be the team's Superstock rider Kieran Clarke who will be in action for a second time on the 1000cc Honda Fireblade whereby he will be looking to add to the points he scored on his debut at Oulton Park three weeks ago.
Meanwhile, the Hydrex Bike Animal Honda Team will be taking part in the Superbikes in the Square promotion which takes place in Glasgow on Wednesday evening (6th August), prior to the British Superbike Championship teams heading on to Knockhill.