Rizla Suzuki are set to run a third bike in the Japanese Grand Prix for home favourite and long-time Suzuki rider Kousuke Akiyoshi.

Akiyoshi, a former Suzuka 8 Hour winner and All-Japan Superbike rider, will be making his fourth appearance with the team after competing for them in his home round at Motegi in 2006 and 2007, while he also raced in the 2007 Spanish Grand Prix.

Of those three races, 23-year-old Akiyoshi has finished twice, 13th in Japan 2006 and 17th in Spain, although he was running as high as seventh in the 2007 race at Motegi and will be hoping for more of the same this year.

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Rizla Suzuki have already entered a third bike for Ben Spies at Laguna Seca and Indianapolis this year, the American rider finishing a very creditable eighth and sixth respectively.