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Bennetts British Superbike: Lavilla and Kiyonari take the victories

Bennetts British Superbike: Lavilla and Kiyonari take the victories

Bennetts British Superbike: Lavilla and Kiyonari take the victories

Michael Rutter saw his advantage in the chase of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship slashed during a problematic double race ninth round at Silverstone where his rivals Gregorio Lavilla and Ryuichi Kiyonari each took a victory.

The action was both dramatic and littered by incidents, but it was Rutter, riding the HM Plant Honda who set the pace in the opener, either side of a stoppage caused by a three rider tumble at Copse Corner, only to make a rare error, running marginally wide at Park and allowing Lavilla to nose ahead.

The Airwaves Ducati rider held on, under increasing pressure from Rutter, but at Woodcote on the penultimate lap, the Honda rider tipped off at exactly the same place that his team-mate Kiyonari had crashed on the second lap.

"I lost the front end – there was no warning, nothing I could do about it I was looking to go for the win, but not at that point. I am really gutted, very disappointed," reflected Rutter who managed to re-start and salvage a single point, coming in fifteenth. "Riding that last lap was bit dodgy because the handlebar was broken."

Kiyonari, meanwhile had remounted, charging through the pack from last to finish eighth, underlining his determination to become the first Japanese rider to win the British crown.

Lavilla enjoyed his fourth victory of the campaign, just ahead of his Airwaves Ducati teamster Leon Haslam, with the reigning champion John Reynolds bringing his Rizla Suzuki home in third place.

The Spaniard then battled hard for a winning double, but Kiyonari was out to set the record straight with a brilliant front-running performance, again in a race re-started after a three rider crash early on.

"Very pleased – I was determined to finish the second race without problem but pushed very hard on the last lap to ensure the victory – very lucky in the first race, and hard work to pick up places after the crash," smiled Kiyonari as he enjoyed his tenth victory of the campaign.

He now heads to the Holiday Monday, 29 August tenth round at Cadwell Park within 26 points of Rutter, who took a distant fourth in that race. Lavilla, second, again just ahead of his team-mate Haslam, is only a further four points down.

MotoGP, 2005

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