Last weekend’s WP Racing fuelled British Superbike triple header at Oulton saw Ryuichi Kiyonari just miss out on a hat trick of victories by a super ride from Josh Brookes.
The pick of the action came in race one. After an earlier crash in the second qualifying session Kiyonari stormed to victory from nowhere in the opening race at Oulton Park leaving Josh Brookes, second, and Shane Byrne, third wondering where it went wrong.
The start of the race saw Byrne get off to a flyer after qualifying in pole with Brookes in hot pursuit. Brookes quickly caught up to the back tyre of Byrne and on lap 3 made a decisive move to elevate the Milwaukee Yamaha team rider to first place, all be it short lived as he ran wide on the exit of Cascades handing Byrne the lead once more.
As the pair diced at the front, Kiyonari was carving his way through the field from his tenth place grid start. Kiyonari was decisive moving up the order every lap and after making moves on Dan Linfoot and Tommy Bridewell he was soon in close contention to the leading pair.
Brookes moved back ahead of Byrne at Hizzys on the fifth lap and then the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki rider had Kiyonari to contend with as he bid to hold on to second place. The triple title-winners then duelled for second place, with Kiyonari taking the edge with a move down the inside at Lodge on the ninth lap.
A lap later and he had caught and made a move on Brookes and then despite coming under pressure from the Australian on the closing laps he held on to claim his third win of the season ahead of Brookes and Byrne.
Kiyonari doubled up on race wins in the second race at Oulton Park as he defied the intense pressure from rivals Josh Brookes, who again took second, and Shane Byrne, who took third, to winnarrowly by just 0.167s.
Kiyonari explained race two; "was a very difficult race and I know the conditions were not my favourite, so I followed Josh and then when I passed him I just kept pushing hard and tried to out brake him. I don't want to be finishing in second again."
The final race of the day saw an end to Kiyonari reign of supremacy as he slipped to fourth with Brookes refusing to allow the Buildbase BMW rider a hat trick of victories.
On a drying track Brookes instantly fired himself off the line to lead the pack and then consistently set lap times faster than his rivals to edge out an advantage. Brookes pushed hard lap after lap to maintain his lead over Byrne in second to claim his fourth victory of the season and close again in the podium point’s standings.
Byrne still remains as championship leader however the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki rider cannot rest on his laurels. With fantastic performances from Kiyonari and Brookes, Byrne will surely feel he needs a victory in round 8 at Cadwell Park in, two weeks’ time, to maintain his dominance at the top.