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Nakano retires.

Unfortunately for Nakano, Aspar wanted a Spanish rider to please his sponsors and the whole project eventually broke down, ending Nakano's final hope of remaining on the premier-class grid.

A place as a test rider for any of the Japanese teams would have been possible, but Nakano believed he had plenty of racing potential left and chose to take on a new challenge in the World Superbike Championship - riding Aprilia's brand new RSV4 alongside Max Biaggi in 2009.

A fourth place during round two at Qatar indicated a potentially promising partnership, but Nakano broke his collarbone next time out at Valencia and also missed the following Assen round.

After his comeback, Nakano went on to claim a best of sixth place at Donington Park (round nine), before a neck injury during round eleven at the Nurburgring forced him to sit out the remaining three rounds and ultimately marked the end of his professional racing career.

Team-mate Biaggi took nine podiums, including one race win, on his way to fourth in the 2009 WSBK championship.

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October 28, 2009 4:39 PM
Last Edited 335 days ago

Good luck to you Shinya in whatever the future may hold. I was completely gutted when he lost the 250cc title to Jacque at the last race on the last lap. I always thought he was the better racer of the 2. Nakano wasn't shabby on a 500cc. I will never forget when he was tossed over the bars of his Kawasaki 990 at Mugello at over 200mph when his rear Bridgestone exploded on the front straight. He could have easily been killed. THE VERY NEXT WEEK he raced and if I'm not mistaken placed 7th. It was a heroic ride to say the least.

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