Alex Lowes became one of the biggest talking points of 2012 in BSB after his strong end-of-season charge that saw him not only make the Showdown, but also win both races at Silverstone, beating his one-time hero Shane Byrne with a stunning last corner pass in one of the races.
Lowes' plan was to stick with Team WFR Honda for another season, but the team dramatically capitulated several weeks ago, leaving him high and dry.
Luckily, Lowes already had some support for Honda in place for 2013 and, when WFR folded, was snapped up by the Samsung Honda team.
MCN discussed the deal with him.
You've bagged one of the top rides in BSB. How does it feel?
It's obviously a great opportunity for me to join Samsung Honda for 2013 and I'm ready to give it everything.
I had a great season on the Honda last year and my priority was always to stay with them for 2013. I think my style suits the Fireblade and I feel comfortable pushing it.
Last year things started to work for you in the second half of the year. Did the season pan out as you expected?
I think I surprised a lot of people last year, but I knew that we were capable and it wasn't more than I expected.
Once we got to where we needed to be at Cadwell Park, everything had come together and that was at the important part of the season before the Showdown.
My confidence was really high and we showed what we were capable of ; we knew we could do it, it just took time to get it right, but now I've had that extra experience of the Honda I don't think it will take much next year.
What do you see as the difference between the Team WFR Honda you rode for this year and Samsung Honda?
The Samsung Honda team have a lot of experience and obviously we want to win the championship.
They are a strong team and I think we are in a really good position to try and win that back.
This is my best chance - now that I've had a couple of seasons and learnt the Honda, I just need to come out and be consistent right from the start of the season.
I want to pick up where I left off last year, and then we should be in a good position for the end of the season and the Showdown.
How do you feel about teaming up with Kiyo?
I've learnt a lot from the last two seasons and I'm sure with the experience of the team I can carry on doing that again this year.
Kiyo is a triple champion, so I'm looking forward to being in the same garage as him.
I am still young, so I feel that this is the next way for me to progress and I want to be winning more races next season as I definitely think I am in a position now to be going for the title.
Who are going to be the main players in BSB 2013?
Shakey and Josh are going to be up there, as they have both stayed with the same team. I know Kiyo is fast, but I'm not worried as I know what I need to do next season and I can't wait to get started.