Alvaro Bautista is confident he can live up to the responsibility of representing Suzuki single-handedly in the 2011 MotoGP championship.
The 26-year-old Spaniard's rookie campaign in 2010 was disrupted by injury and he is now Suzuki's sole MotoGP rider – a challenge Bautista insists he is ready for.
"We know this year is going to be very hard work, but I'm not afraid of that and we're all looking forward to the challenge," Bautista said.
Having gone well at Sepang last year, Bautista is eager to get back to the Malaysian track to evaluate the newly improved GSV-R when testing commences next week.
"I cannot wait to get back on the bike, because it has been such a long time since I've ridden and want get back to work as soon as possible. I'm looking forward to see what the guys have achieved at the Suzuki factory and what new things we have to test at Sepang," Bautista said.
Suzuki cut back to a single bike over the winter, with Bautista's former teammate Loris Capirossi departing for Pramac Ducati. MotoGP organizer Dorna hinted that it could take legal action against the team – insisting that Suzuki had committed to fielding two bikes through to 2012 – but has so far held off.
Approaching his second season in motorcycle racing's premier class, Bautista is aiming for podium places.
"We are all very motivated and now we need to get on the track and show what we can do – I'm excited and very positive about 2011," he said.
The opening race takes place in Qatar in March.