Jakub Smrz says he couldn’t think of a better place to begin his British Superbike career than the ‘Cathedral’ at Assen. The Czech rider left the Effenbert Liberty SBK squad to join Splitlath Redmond Racing in BSB, taking over the seat vacated by John Laverty.

Smrz admits the change in machinery from Ducati to Aprilia, plus the different technical regulations in the British Championship will make his life difficult this weekend but he hopes his experience of the Assen circuit will compensate.

“It is one of my favourite tracks where I have many nice moments to remember like my first WSB podium and few first row starts. I think that Assen is the best track where we can start. I rode an Aprilia for four races in WSB and have also done some testing with my father’s team’s Superstock bike. I liked it a lot and made a few good results with it, but at the moment it’s hard to say if this experience will be useful. The BSB bike is very different to the ones I’ve ridden before and unfortunately we have not had a chance to test the Splitlath Redmond bike before this weekend, so everything is going to be new.”

“Until we arrive it’s hard to have any expectations. Of course I will have some advantage in Assen because I know the track really well and have always been fast there. At the moment the main goal is to find a good feeling and to improve practice by practice and work hard to get as close to the top as possible.”

“For sure, I am very excited for this new experience and I know this is a difficult championship with many fast riders. Whenever I have had time I have always watched BSB races and I am happy to be joining all those guys. Already, before coming to my first BSB event, I feel very well and happy with my new team and I can’t wait to meet all of them and begin our work together.”

Smrz will be partnered by Australian rider Troy Herfoss and the 25 year old also has knowledge of the circuit which hosted a round of the German Superbike Championship and hopes to score his first points this weekend.

“This weekend I think it’s possible to be a lot higher placed, and depending on how I adapt to the bike this time I would like to think I can ride into the top 10. At this track I have been fast all year and not everyone has tested here. Also, having Kuba beside me can only be a help and motivation. Mostly I’m just appreciative that the team has given me another opportunity to work with them again.”