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Kiyonari retains British Superbike title

Kiyonari retains British Superbike title

Ryuichi Kiyonari went into the final round of the Bennetts British Superbike championship at the weekend knowing that a top four finish in one of the races would be enough for him to retain the title he won a year ago at the corresponding round of the 2006 season.

Ryuichi Kiyonari went into the final round of the Bennetts British Superbike championship at the weekend knowing that a top four finish in one of the races would be enough for him to retain the title he won a year ago at the corresponding round of the 2006 season.

When the Japanese 25 year-old HM Plant Honda rider crossed the line third, behind second placed team-mate Jonathan Rea and winner Gregorio Lavilla (Airwaves Ducati), in the first race at Brands Hatch on Sunday it was enough for him clinch the title again, much to his obvious delight.

"I was very nervous. For me it was difficult. If you push too hard, you might crash, but if you do not push on, maybe you'll lose concentration and crash," explained the new double champion with a beaming smile.

"It was very important for me to win the title, now twice," continued Kiyonari. "I tried to ride normally after a good start to the race but could not relax at all. My bike was good, tyres good, and now, I am very, very happy."

The second race saw Lavilla and Rea finish first and second again, while Kiyonari came home fourth behind Rizla Suzuki's Cal Crutchlow.

The season therefore concluded with Kiyonari at the head of the standings with 433 points, ahead of runner-up Rea on 407. Airwaves Ducati pair Leon Haslam and Lavilla were third and fourth respectively, Haslam with 387 points and his Spanish colleague with 368.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2007

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