Haslam set to replace injured Kiyonari.

Leon Haslam could be drafted in to the Ten Kate Honda World Superbike team for the latest round at Magny-Cours after it was confirmed that Ryuichi Kiyonari has been forced to withdraw through injury.

Kiyonari suffered a big fall towards the end of his programme at the French circuit last week, the impact with the ground breaking his right collarbone. Returning to his native Japan to have it plated, Kiyonari will not be available to ride at the Nevers track at the weekend.

While no replacement has been confirmed, with the penultimate round of the championship only a few days away, they will need to be scouted quickly.

For the moment, the most likely substitute is expected to be Haslam, who is favoured in the HRC fold, while his rich vein of form in the British Championship has revived his reputation on the world stage too.

Indeed, while he admits he has not been approached yet, Haslam told that he would definitely be up for replacing his former BSB rival.

“I would be 100 per cent up for that,” said Haslam, who will also be competing at the final World Superbike round at Portimao aboard the HM Plant Honda. “It would be a fantastic opportunity. I know Kiyo has been injured but I haven't had the phone call from Ten Kate.”

Meanwhile, Kiyonari is not the only Ten Kate rider thought to be struggling with injury as Kenan Sofuoglu, according to, is still in recovery from his monster shunt at Vallelunga.

Although he came away with nothing more than bruising at the time, the Turk was already carrying a shoulder injury before the accident, caused when Max Biaggi high-sided in front of him. He was due to test at Magny-Cours, but did not take part in the end.

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Ben Sugden - Unregistered

September 29, 2008 1:29 PM

Haslam should take this opportunity with both hands and try to impress on an extremely competitive bike in France. His lack of knowledge of the track may hinder him, but he can''t do as bad as Kiyo possibly would have done, having never raced there before himself. Come on Leon. You deserve a bit of luck after the last few BSB rounds you''ve pretty much bossed!

mike hunt - Unregistered

September 29, 2008 7:10 PM

Yesterday at Silverstone everyone was routing for Leon in race one and only Shakey got louder cheers. It's only the armchair known nothings on here that badmouth him :)

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