Kiyonari leads Brookes by just 0.033s in opening session of 2015
After missing out on the 2014 t**le, Buildbase BMW’s Ryuichi Kiyonari fired himself to the top of the times in the opening MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship free practice session at Donington Park, by just 0.033s from Milwaukee Yamaha’s Josh Brookes.
Kiyonari had been building throughout the session as the three-time t**le winner bids to add a fourth to his tally. In the closing stages the positions changed frantically, but it was the Buildbase BMW team who came out on top.
Brookes had started the session ready to prove that the new Yamaha R1 will be a serious contender for the 2015 t**le and the Australian didn’t disappoint. He moved up inside the top five, before posting a lap in the closing stages to move second and within reach of his Japanese rival.
Lee Jackson prepares for his first full campaign in the championship alongside Kiyonari at Buildbase BMW, and the rookie was fast straight out the blocks, finishing third after dropping back behind Brookes in the final stages.
Danny Buchan was up to fourth as he gears up for the season with the Tommy Hill-managed Be Wiser Kawasaki team ahead of Howie Mainwaring who completed the top five for the Quattro Plant Kawasaki team.
Stuart Easton was the fastest of the PBM Kawasakis in sixth, as defending champion Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne was eighth after some technical issues during the session. The pair were split by another MCE BSB rookie, Luke Mossey, who had a strong start to his debut season on the second of the Quattro Plant Kawasakis. Dan Linfoot and James Ellison completed the top ten.
Tyco BMW contenders Tommy Bridewell and Michael Laverty were both outside the top ten in twelfth and 29th respectively after some early issues.
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Donington Park, free practice one:
Ryuichi Kiyonari (Buildbase BMW) 1m:30.385s
Josh Brookes (Milwaukee Yamaha) +0.033s
Lee Jackson (Buildbase BMW) +0.865s
Danny Buchan (Be Wiser Kawasaki) +0.906s
Howie Mainwaring (Quattro Plant Kawasaki) +0.921s
Stuart Easton (PBM Kawasaki) +1.250s
Luke Mossey (Quattro Plant Kawasaki) +1.391s
Shane Byrne (PBM Kawasaki) +1.468s
Dan Linfoot (Honda Racing) +1.481s
James Ellison (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +1.566s