Biaggi feeling the pressure
Aprilia rider Max Biaggi believes he has the most to lose in the closing round of the World Superbike Championship at Magny-Cours this weekend.
The 41-year-old tops the riders' standings on 347 points with only Kawasaki's Tom Sykes and Marco Melandri of BMW able to catch him.
But with a healthy 30.5-point lead over Brit Sykes, Biaggi thinks he will be under the most pressure as he looks to add to his 2010 title.
"I want to tackle this race like any other," he said.
"I know the pressure will be high because of the current standings, but we must not lose focus because we are the ones with the most to lose."
The Italian rider also thinks his team can produce the goods over the course of the weekend even if he is the main focus of attention.
"Being out front puts you in the bulls-eye. Our rivals know that any weakness on our part could reopen the competition," he said.
"In any case I am calm and focused as always. We've demonstrated that we can do well when we are able to take advantage of every practice session and I can't wait to get onto the track and get to work."
Biaggi has never finished lower than sixth at the French circuit and knows he does not have to win both races this time out to be crowned world champion for a second time.
The weekend will also be a landmark occasion for Biaggi's compatriot Claudio Corti.
The 25-year-old will make his World Superbike debut with Team Pedercini, giving him the chance to make a name for himself in the formula following an impressive Moto2 season.
"I'm really happy to be able to take part in this final round of the 2012 world championship and I'm even happier to do so with the Pedercini team," Corti told worldsbk.com.
"It will be my first ever World Superbike race, but I need to take things one step at a time as it has been years since I rode a 1000cc machine.
"As far as the Magny-Cours circuit is concerned I have some good and less good memories...I really like the track and cannot wait to get out there with Team Pedercini's Kawasaki."