TOM SYKES has admitted he just can’t wait to mix it with the big boys as he prepares to make his Superbike debut on the World stage.

The fired-up Fenay Bridge-based star, 22, is at Brands Hatch, Kent, preparing to make his debut in the 10th round of the World Superbike Championship.

And his confidence has soared after the talented rider took his first Bennetts British Superbike win last time out at Oulton Park and promptly followed that up with another win giving him a dominant double to boost his points and grab third place overall in the hard-fought national Championship.

He said: “The double at Oulton was brilliant and, to be honest, just a relief to get the first wins out of the way.

“I came down to earth pretty quickly, though, by just relaxing.

“On Sunday night after the race, I stopped for a burger on the way back then when I got home I just chilled out with a cup of tea and watched some racing.

“But since then, I’ve got to admit, I’ve had some poor nights sleep, thinking about the world race and how I’m going to tackle Brands Hatch.

“It’s a circuit I’m familiar with through British Superbikes but the Superpole tomorrow is something I haven’t done before – and that’s making me a bit nervous.

“But, at the end of the day, I’m going to have my usual Rizla Suzuki team around me which will give me confidence and I’m just going to treat the qualifying like the race for pole in British Superbikes – go for it big style out on my own and see if I can get up with the big boys at the front end of the grid.”

He added: “Their bikes run different spec engines and are tuned more highly, but I’ll be racing my usual GSX-R1000 British Superbike Suzuki, and it’s running superbly at the moment.

“Fortunately, Brands is not a circuit where you run on full gas, so it should play into our hands.

“I can’t wait to rub shoulders with Bayliss, Haga and Kagayama, they need to look out, I’m going for the podium.”

Sykes’s Rizla Suzuki is working just how he likes and its capable chassis can handle all the challenging intricacies of the 2.3 mile GP circuit.

Rizla Suzuki team manager, Jack Valentine, said: “We are all really up for this World Superbike weekend and believe that Tom is capable of two impressive results.

“Our main focus initially will be to get into the top 16 to ensure he goes forward to Superpole.

“Ideally we would like a front row start to give him the best chance to get away with the lead group.

“It will be a tough race as the World Superbike guys take no prisoners and they are on it right from the moment the lights go out.

“It will be one of the hardest races of his life but I’m sure Tom and his Rizla Suzuki squad are capable of rising to the challenge.”

2008 WSB Championship: 1Troy Bayliss (Aus) Pts 309, 2 Max Neukirchner (Ger) 230, 3 Troy Corser (Aus) 218, 4 Carlos Checa (Esp) 215, 5 Noriyuki Haga (Jpn) 210 6 Fonsi Nieto (Esp) 161, 7 Ruben Xaus (Esp) 148, 8 Michel Fabrizio (Ita) 147, 9 Max Biaggi (Ita) 146, 10 Ryuichi Kiyonari (Jpn) 115.

First qualifying was taking place today followed by tomorrow’s second qualifying and Superpole.

Raceday is Sunday with race one at noon and race two at 3.30.

British Eurosport will broadcast live from 11.00 to 5.00 or you can watch on-line at