Buildbase BMW’s Ryuichi Kiyonari cemented his place at the top of the final MCE British Superbike free practice timesheets, after a 1’37.130 - going a tenth under lap record pace at Assen this morning.
The triple champ was able to hold off attacks from, Milwaukee Yamaha’s Josh Brookes who managed to out-pace Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki’s Shane Byrne to snatch second on the sheets after a 1’37.435.
The top three were full of Showdown contenders, as Byrne managed to hold on to third on the timesheets – but was one tenth of a second off the pace of his Australian rival.
Initially it was Kiyonari, who set a hot lap, and a 1’37.130 was three tenths faster than the best lap clocked by Hopkins yesterday. The Japanese rider blasted his way out of the pits and set that time after only three minutes out on track.
Byrne was holding on to second on the sheets, until Brookes put down a 1’37.469, pushing Byrne back down to third after the Milwaukee man went a tenth quicker with eight minutes remaining.
RAF Reserves Honda’s Peter Hickman was the fastest of the non title fighters, and wedged his bike between Byrne and Quattro Plant Kawasaki’s Dan Linfoot – after his last lap dash certainly paid off with a 1’37.660.
Milwaukee Yamaha’s Tommy Bridewell just missed out on a top five place on the timing-screens by 0.01 seconds, from Linfoot, with fellow Showdown rider, GBmoto Kawasaki’s Chris Walker ending the morning in 14th.
Tyco Suzuki’s John Hopkins was on course to soar to the top of the timesheets, as he was faster than Kiyonari through sectors one and two, but on the final sector he was held up by traffic and remained in seventh overall, followed by Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki’s Stuart Easton and GBmoto Kawasaki’s James Ellison.
Christian Iddon was making his debut in the BSB class onboard his World Superbike Alstare Bimota machine, and a 1’37.997 was good enough for him to round off the top ten this morning.