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Haga: 'I want to win'

Former WSB and MotoGP star not backing off

NORIYUKI Haga has said he will be giving 100% this year in British Superbikes.

Haga, who made the switch from World Superbikes to British Superbikes for 2012 has been the subject of paddock gossip and speculation that he's only in the series for the money, but the former WSB and MotoGP rider has said he's up for the challenge and will be trying hard for results.

Haga, known as the Samurai of Slide, first rode in the Japanese Superbike Championship in 1993 on a Ducati, switching to Yamaha in 1995 and won the championship with Yamaha in 1997. Haga has been runner-up in WSB on three occasions and has finished third in the series four times but never won the championship.

After a brief stint in MotoGP on the Aprilia RS3 Cube in 2003, Haga made the switch back to WSB where he has been a permanent rider since 2004. Haga rode for the PATA Aprilia squad in 2011 finishing 8th in the championship, he last rode a Yamaha in 2008, finishing 3rd in the championship.

Haga said: "I like Brands Hatch; I have never raced on the Indy circuit but this won't be a problem as I know the rest of the track very well from World Superbike. I have in the past had lots of fans there at the track so I hope that they come and support me again. Like everyone I want to win. This is a new challenge for me with different circuits and different riders and I will be trying very hard to get results. I will be giving one hundred percent and for sure I will go for it in the races!"

This season marks a new era for the championship. Electronic aids such as traction control, launch control and anti-wheelie have been removed whilst rev limits and a control Motec ECU have been introduced. The new regulations are set to level the field and the reduction in cost is expected to enable new teams the chance to challenge at the front. 

The British Superbike Championship kicks off at Brands Hatch this Easter weekend (6/7/8/9 April).

Click here for the 2012 British Superbikes calendar