ADAM Jenkinson has predicted that this year’s National Superstock 1000 Championship to be one of the most keenly-contested to date.

With that in mind, the Knutsford rider plans to do everything he can to be ready for a curtain-raiser at Donington Park later this month.

“There are quite a few former superbike riders coming into the category,” he said.

“I think it’s going to be even competitive, more so than it’s been for a while.”

The 32-year-old started the 2016 campaign on board an NMT No Limits Kawsaski before returning to Northern Escalator Installations Racing - A Halifax-based squad he raced for the previous year - after the opening round.

He had to wait until September’s meeting at home circuit Oulton Park to stand on the podium, finishing second.

It left the Bucklow Hill ace seventh overall in the final riders’ standings.

He is optimistic of an improvement this time around, more so after German outfit Alpha Racing upgraded his BMW machine over the winter.

A successful three-day shakedown in Spain, at the Circuito de Almeria, followed last week.

“We took the bike to Munich for a full refresh, so she’ll be good to go from the first race,” added Jenkinson.

“I was in the mix on it last year, and I’m confident I can be again.”

He returns to southern Europe to continue preparations for the 2017 edition during a test at the Circuito de Cartagena, in Murcia, next week.

The opening round of the championship, which this term includes two races at each meeting, is scheduled for March 31.