“OBVIOUSLY Marco Melandri (left), who was third for BMW in last year’s championship, is a big threat given that he is on the same bike and has the same crew as last year.
“Aprilia won the championship last year and they have two good riders on board this year in Eugene Laverty and Sylvain Guintoli – they should be strong in this year’s championship.
“Honda have been doing some very hard work in the off-season and slowly seem to be getting up to speed again for the competition.
“At the end of the day we are in World Superbikes and there are not many shabby riders, they are all on a level and on any given day there are six riders or, even a couple more, that can win.
“I am focused on my own issues and see if I can improve. My main aim is to improve on my performance from 2012. It helps me this year that I am settled in the same team.
“Winter testing went smoothly, we arrived in Phillip Island ready to go and then we had a bit of a setback with the crash.
“We know these things happen, but if we can be in the ballpark tomorrow and come away with points, we have five weeks after that and a lot more rounds to come back even stronger.”