Haslam, who was set to make his third WorldSBK wildcard appearance of the season for Pedercini Kawasaki, has had to abandon such plans and instead fly to Japan in order to focus on the Suzuka 8 hours event.
The Visiontrack Kawasaki rider in British Superbike will be riding alongside KRT’s Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes at the prestigious endurance race next month (August 4-7), but with Rea and Lowes focused on their respective WorldSBK campaigns, preparation for the Japanese manufacturer has again fallen on Haslam’s shoulders.
Between them, Haslam (3), Lowes (3) and Rea (2) have taken eight wins at the Suzuka 8 eight hours, making them one of the favourites to win this year’s 43rd edition.
It means Pedercini Kawasaki, who don’t have a full-time rider confirmed after its split from Loris Cresson following the season-opener in Aragon, have this weekend elected for Vickers who himself has several years of experience with Kawasaki machinery.
Now aboard an M 1000 RR with FHO Racing BMW, Vickers spent his first three seasons at RAF Regular & Reserve Kawasaki, before a change of its team name took place in 2021 – became the current Visiontrack Kawasaki outfit.
Set for his debut in the world championship, Vickers said: “I’m really excited about this weekend to be joining Team Pedercini Racing for a wildcard opportunity at Most.
“It’s always been a goal of mine to eventually race in World Superbike and to get this little taster is amazing, so a big thank you to Lucio, Guim and everyone else involved.
“Also, thanks to Faye Ho for allowing me to take this opportunity! I’m going to enjoy this weekend and learn as much as I can from the experience.”
Vickers, who has endured a difficult campaign with BMW so far, will see a familiar face on the grid as current BSB team-mate Peter Hickman is scheduled for his second consecutive WorldSBK round.
After a wildcard at Donington Park with FHO Racing BMW, Hickman will now replace the injured Michael Van Der Mark at the factory BMW team.