Suzuki Alstare Brux's 2009 World Superbike season continued to go from bad to worse during the latest round of the season at Brno as sole representative Yukio Kagayama struggled to a mere 14th place finish.
Having been dealt a blow by the confirmation that Max Neukirchner will be out of action for some time after breaking his vertebra during testing at Imola, Suzuki decided to focus on Kagayama for the weekend.
However, while the Japanese rider made occasional top ten appearances in free practice, he could only qualify in 13th position and would go on to make little progress during the races.
Indeed, after blaming problems with set-up, a consistent complaint of the 2009 GSX-R1000, Kagayama was forced to settle for a lowly 14th position at the end of race one.
“All year we have had problems trying to find good set-ups at the track and this weekend was no exception,” he said. “And sometimes we have also had big problems with grip. In the morning warm-up we found a good tyre and I could do 2min 00.1 lap times easily. So we chose the same tyre for the first race and it didn't work at all!
“It was sliding around right from the start of the race and I couldn't push hard at all. I wanted to go faster, but I couldn't turn the bike and kept missing my apexes. After five laps of fighting, I decided to go as fast as I could without crashing and that's what I did.
Race two was similarly disappointing after Kagayama was caught out by a slowing John Hopkins at the final corner, the former Brno winner clipping the back of the Stiggy Honda and coming down.
“We used a different tyre in race two and it was a bit better, but after a while it started chattering. I got caught in a group and I just couldn't overtake anybody because I had to be careful on the brakes. I was just behind Hopkins when his bike suddenly slowed in the corner and I hit him. I don't think it was his fault, something went on his bike, but it's just my luck that I fell and he didn't.”
Kagayama is now 12th in the overall standings, 23 points behind 11th place Ryuichi Kiyonari.