FORMER CHAMPION RETURNS TO BRITISH SUPERBIKES AT CROFT2009-09-07 09:27
Former double British Superbike Champion and current World Superbike Championship rider Ryuichi Kiyonari will make a sensational return to the 2009 MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship at Croft this weekend (11/13th September).
The 26-year-old Japanese rider will ride for the HM Plant Honda team, with whom he won the title in 2006 and 2007, in place of the injured Glen Richards, and is expected to take the challenge to runaway championship leader Leon Camier (Airwaves Yamaha).
'Kiyo' has been racing for multiple World Champions, Ten Kate Honda, in the World Superbike Championship for the past two seasons, and the ride is a one-off as Richards is expected to return at the following round at Silverstone,
The former MotoGP rider has an impressive pedigree at the 2.125-mile North Yorkshire track, the home round for Honda team sponsors HM Plant who are based in Newcastle, winning four times, once in each of 2005 and 2006 and then taking the double ahead of his team-mate Jonathan Rea in 2007.
"I'm really excited to be riding for the HM Plant Honda team again. I'm also very happy to race in BSB and especially at Croft. I love this circuit and won both races when I last raced there in 2007," said Kiyonari.
It should make for good racing as in round eight of the series at Brands Hatch last month, another WSB rider, Broc Parkes, competed as a wild card aboard his Kawasaki and ran Camier close in all three races and the GSE Racing team, who run the Airwaves bikes for Camier and Cumbrian team-mate James Ellison, know all about the strength of Kiyonari as he beat them to the title in both 2006 and 2007.
Saturday's action commences at 09.30 and sees the all-important qualifying sessions, including the exciting F1-style Swan Combi 50 Roll for Pole knockout qualifying session to set the grid for Sunday's two Superbike races as well as the qualifying sessions for the other classes.
Sunday's action kicks off with the warm up sessions at 12.00 before the first British Superbike race which is scheduled to start at 13.30. However, during the morning, as well as there being an open paddock, there will be an hour-long Pit Walk for fans to meet the riders and that is scheduled for between 10.30 and 11.30.
Source: Cartersport Motorsport Media
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