Ryuichi Kiyonari has revived his rookie World Superbike season after scoring a superb double victory at Brands Hatch.
The Japanese rider had endured a patchy season on the Ten Kate Honda so far, but hopes were high that his familiarity with the Brands Hatch circuit through his seasons racing in the British series would result in an improvement of form.
Even so, not many were expecting Kiyonari to break his victory duck in the first race and then follow it up with another resounding win just a few hours later.
Battling back from a poor start in the first race, Kiyonari picked off his rivals steadily before harassing Troy Bayliss for the much of the race. After two failed attempts at wrestling the lead off his rival, Kiyonari finally made a move stick on lap 21, by which he cruised to victory.
“The start was not so good, much like it was at Brno,” he told Crash.net Radio
. “But I was able to catch the riders in front of me because I have had a really good set-up on the bike. I could be consistent too.”
The second race was almost as much of an uphill battle for Kiyonari as he ran fourth in the early stages. However, a series of inspired moves saw him grab the lead on lap nine and while he lost it again soon afterwards whilst under pressure from Noriyuki Haga, he snatched it back on lap 11 to run home a two second winner.
“It was very difficult to keep Nori behind me because he was putting pressure on me. That caused me to make a mistake initially, but in the last ten laps I managed to concentrate on what was going on in front of me.”
Up to eighth in the standings and now in the battle for sixth in the championship, Kiyonari is now chasing a similar result at another one of his old BSB haunts, Donington Park.
“I want to keep winning races now, but it won't be easy. I will try my best though.”