THE ninth round of the British Superbike Championship visits Silverstone in Northamptonshire this weekend with riders and fans all hoping that the weather will allow them to race. Freak rain combined with a new surface meant last month’s MotoGP on the GP circuit at Silverstone was cancelled on race day.

Taking matters into their own hands, BSB bosses have announced this weekend’s racing will take place on the National circuit to minimise any chance of a repeat of the MotoGP cancellation.

Cancellation is the last thing the title contenders want because they are desperate to try and score as many podium points as possible ahead of the three-round showdown, which starts at Oulton Park one week later and will decide the 2018 Champion.

Silverstone is a triple header round, so there are three races for Kawasaki’s Jake Dixon, Yamaha’s Josh Brookes, Ducati’s Glenn Irwin and Suzuki’s Bradley Ray to try and close the gap to JG Speedfit’s runaway Championship leader Leon Haslam.

BMW’s Peter Hickman, currently the sixth and last man in the shoot-out, will be looking behind as much as forward. He is only seven points ahead of Kawasaki’s Danny Buchan and will not want to lose his place in the final six showdown.

Haslam is coming off a double win at Cadwell Park and is flying high with news of his move to the World Superbike Championship in 2019. He will want to go there as the reigning British Champion. It’s hard to bet against him at Silverstone too, the Championship is now very much his to lose.

Plantec Assist’s Ben Luxton took a well-earned fifth at Cadwell Park last time on his G&S Kawasaki in the Pirelli National Superstock 600 class. He will be looking for a podium return at Silverstone though. Realistically, if he had not missed the first five rounds, he would be competing for the Championship podium and that will spur him on to do as well as he can.

The ninth round takes place at Silverstone between 7th-9th September, with one Superbike race on the Saturday and two on the Sunday.