Ryuichi Kiyonari (Buildbase BMW) celebrated his second double win of the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, holding off Shane Byrne in the second race at Donington Park, as the Title Fighters now prepare for the Showdown opener at Assen.
The Milwaukee Yamaha team celebrated a double podium finish with Tommy Bridewell and Josh Brookes scoring a third place apiece ahead of the Showdown.
With both riders already confirmed in the end of season Showdown, the focus of the weekend was to bag the final Podium Points of the season ahead of Assen. In the opening race Bridewell put in a determined ride to charge through to secure a third place finish to add to his podium tally, however he couldn’t make it a repeat performance after he crashed out at the Old Hairpin in the second race.
Brookes had been pushing throughout the weekend to close the gap and after missing out on the podium in the first race to his team-mate he was focused on making amends in race two, which he did by carving his way through from a second row start. Brookes took third place and then pushed to close in on the race leaders, but it wasn’t enough to challenge the leading pair on the final lap.
Josh Brookes: “!t has been a hard weekend as it didn’t start well and I had a few problems and the whole weekend I have been trying to find a setting that worked with the gearing and make the corners also work well. We didn’t really find that sweet spot and it seemed to be a compromise but we didn’t give up and we kept working throughout the weekend to make it better.
“I was disappointed in the first race, because at this stage of the season once you are in the Showdown, you only get a reward if you are on the podium with the points. Race two was definitely the hardest I have had to ride for one point! I was able to improve my times but in race two and starting from the second row wasn’t ideal. It took me a long time to get in front of Stuart , I knew I had the speed but there was a real strong yo-yo affect of where he was quicker and where I was and it meant I couldn’t make a pass for some time. That gave Kiyo and Shakey the chance to get away at the front and then I had my work cut out. I did make up some time which was the most satisfying part of the weekend.”
Tyco Suzuki riders John Hopkins and Josh Waters each took a Pole Position at Donington Park, with the Australian taking the best of the finishing places with sixth in race one and fifth in race two.
Waters currently holds ninth place in the British Superbike Championship standings but has now closed the gap on eighth-placed James Ellison to just 13 points.
But Hopkins’ cruel misfortune continued to restrict his progress: Starting from Pole in race one, he was shuffled down to sixth position before an early Safety Car deployment; after which Hopper crashed at the Melbourne Loop, dropping him to a seventh-row grid position for race two. But he heroically fought-back from 19th place at the end of lap one to finish just inside the top-10 in ninth position after 20 tough laps on the 2.4-mile Donington Park circuit.
Josh Waters: “I’m disappointed that I didn’t make more of the Pole Position in race two, but I let myself get bashed-up a bit on that first lap and had to come back from seventh position. But yeah, overall I’m happy with the weekend. We’re now starting to get inside that top-six regularly and today I believe I could have run in the battle for the final podium spot. But it’s coming together and we’re at the sharp-end and I’m learning all the time. I’m really enjoying riding the Tyco Suzuki GSX-R1000 and although I’ve never been to the next round at Assen before, I’m sure come qualifying we’ll be good.”
Donington Park, race one result
1. Ryuichi Kiyonari (Buildbase BMW)
2. Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +0.184s
3. Tommy Bridewell (Milwaukee Yamaha) +1.188s
4. Josh Brookes (Milwaukee Yamaha) +1.614s
5. Stuart Easton (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +4.519s
6. Josh Waters (Tyco Suzuki) +5.298s
7. Peter Hickman (RAF Reserves Honda) +5.598s
8. Dan Linfoot (Quattro Plant Kawasaki) +10.852s
9. Patric Muff (Bathams BMW) +15.000s
10. James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) +15.104s
Donington Park, race two result
1. Ryuichi Kiyonari (Buildbase BMW)
2.Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +0.489s
3. Josh Brookes (Milwaukee Yamaha) +1.183s
4. Stuart Easton (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +7.438s
5. Josh Waters (Tyco Suzuki) +10.874s
6. Julien Da Costa (Honda Racing) +11.764s
7. Peter Hickman (RAF Reserves Honda) +15.039s
8. James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) +16.102s
9. John Hopkins (Tyco Suzuki) +16.965s
10. Chris Walker (Lloyds British GBmoto Racing Kawasaki) +17.190s
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship standings ahead of the Showdown
Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) 562
Josh Brookes (Milwaukee Yamaha) 536
Ryuichi Kiyonari (Buildbase BMW) 535
Tommy Bridewell (Milwaukee Yamaha) 508
Chris Walker (Lloyds British GBmoto Racing Kawasaki) 505
Dan Linfoot (Quattro Plant Kawasaki) 501