Ryuichi Kiyonari insists on taking positives from his eighth round World Superbike championship encounters at Misano in Italy, in spite of disappointing results. Today’s two races were won by American Ben Spies and Kiyonari’s Ten Kate Honda team-mate, Jonathan Rea.
In race one, Kiyonari gave the stricken Rea a lift back to the pits after the Northern Irishman’s bike suffered fuelling problems on the sighting lap. However, his gesture resulted in a ride-through penalty for both riders.
Kiyonari was unable to take his ride-through after a near-highside on the opening lap. Rea, who started from the back of the grid for a pit lane infringement, was unable to avoid Kiyonari, who sustained a broken gear-shift and engine damage and was forced to retire.
In race two, the Japanese ace endured a difficult race and was unable to maintain lap times to challenge for the leading positions, finishing in 14th place.
Ryuichi Kiyonari Speaks… (DNF and 14th)
"The first race was difficult with the first lap crash. I had a big high-side but stayed on the bike and Jonathan hit me, although it was not his fault. My gearshift was broken and there was some engine damage so I could not continue past the first lap. In race two, things were OK, but I did not have the same feeling that I had on Saturday and could not keep the lap times. The setting is definitely coming better though and with small steps we are improving. I hope at Donington, things will be even better because I like it there. After that, we have a test in Imola with more improvement I hope."
Ronald ten Kate Speaks… (Team Manager)
"It was a disappointing race day for Kiyonari-san, who showed good pace in the practice and qualifying sessions. We thought he was due some good luck this weekend, but maybe that will have to wait until Donington, where we know he can be very fast whether it’s wet or dry."
2009 World Superbike championship, round eight – Misano, Italy (4.226km, 2 x 24 laps) results
1 Ben Spies (USA) Yamaha 45’02.773ss
2 Shane Byrne (GBR) Ducati +7.931s
3 Michel Fabrizio (ITA) Ducati +11.836
4 Jakub Smrz (CZE) Ducati +11.886
7 Jonathan Rea (GBR) Hannspree Ten Kate Honda +35.772
11 Carlos Checa (ESP) Hannspree Ten Kate Honda +1’04.285 [Insert or upload image]
1 Jonathan Rea (GBR) Hannspree Ten Kate Honda 39’11.204s
2 Michel Fabrizio (ITA) Ducati +0.063s
3 Noriyuki Haga (JPN) Ducati +0.457
4 Jakub Smrz (CZE) Ducati +3.635
5 Carlos Checa (ESP) Hannspree Ten Kate Honda +4.460
14 Ryuichi Kiyonari (JPN) Ten Kate Honda Racing +24.547
Championship points after eight of 14 rounds
Haga 292, Spies 244, Fabrizio 237, Rea 167, Biaggi 135, Leon Haslam (GBR) Honda 134, Tom Sykes (GBR) Yamaha 130, Checa 109, Smrz 108, Kiyonari 98.
Next round: Donington Park, UK – 28 June