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Kiyonari struggles at Assen

Ryuichi Kiyonari has slipped to 15th in the overall World Superbike Championship standings after a dismal weekend at Assen that left him clutching just a single point.

The Japanese rider went into the weekend eager to build on his ninth and 12th place finishes from Valencia, but while he showed flashes of pace during free practice, Kiyonari could only qualify 16th.

Struggling with the bike throughout the first race, Kiyonari could progress only a single position to cross the line in 15th position and snare the final point.

Adjusting the Honda CBR1000RR between the two races, Kiyonari had high hopes of an improved showing in the second encounter, but got no further than 7 laps when a technical issue forced him to retire

“It's been a very frustrating weekend, because it felt like we were making some progress after Valencia. The front end was the main problem for me, and difficulties in qualifying meant the races would be very hard.

“In race two, we made some small changes and the front end felt much better but, unfortunately, I couldn't make the best of it. I will just have to look forward to Monza, which is a circuit I like very much but we will need some luck there I think.”

With Kiyonari scoring six points less at this stage than he had managed in the first eight races of his WSBK career last year, Ronald ten Kate is eager for him to improve his fortunes next time out at Monza.

“I think we've made some progress with the overall setting of Kiyo-san's CBR1000RR and he had a much better feeling from the front in race two. It's a shame we didn't get the chance to see what progress we'd made because he had a technical problem which we're investigating now. It's a shame for Kiyo and hopefully he will enjoy some better fortune in Monza.”


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Kiyo Rulz - Unregistered

April 28, 2009 5:30 PM

This is only Kiyo's second season in WSBK, so there is time left still - after all, he is relatively new to the series. And anyway, it seems that Kiyo comes good towards the end of the season. Monza was his big breakthrough last year - and that is the next round, so hopefully Kiyo will have some better luck. As people have said, Kiyo is an immensely talented rider. Watch this space...



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