Buildbase BMW’s Ryuichi Kiyonari once again dominated the MCE British Superbike free practice sessions at Silverstone and is already on lap record pace, setting phenomenally quick and consistent lap times.
His best lap of a 2’06.286 was only 0.03 seconds off the lap record clocked by Josh Brookes back in 2011. Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki’s Shane Byrne also upped his game but not enough to dethrone Kiyonari. A 2’06.417 was only good enough for second, but was four tenths quicker than Quattro Plant Kawasaki’s Dan Linfoot.
Kiyonari lapped a total of nine laps inside the 2’06’s compared to only five from his championship rival, Byrne, and it showed he is definitely the rider to beat this weekend.
At first it was Byrne who was the rider who set the pace, and a 2’06.417 was enough to place him at the top of the timesheets. But Kiyonari had other plans and with 20 minutes left to the final session of the day he lapped an impressive 2’06.336 – just a tenth off lap record pace.
Milwaukee Yamaha's Josh Brookes was making his way up the timing-screens and was third fastest with a 2’07.709, only for Tyco Suzuki's John Hopkins to go two tenths faster on the 20 minute mark. Meanwhile Quattro Plant Kawasaki’s Howie Mainwaring had a technical problem at Brooklands and came to a stop at the side of the track.
Josh Waters obviously didn’t want to be the only Tyco Suzuki inside the top five, and a 2’07.447 was good enough to place him third with ten minutes to go. Elsewhere Kiyonari was on a roll and was consistently setting lap times within the 2’06’s - and pulled a 2’06.286 out of the bag.
Quattro Plant Kawasaki’s Dan Linfoot was also putting down some super quick lap times and a 2’06.892 was enough to place him third overall. It was a title challenger top three - and the trio were all inside the 2’06’s barrier.
Hopkins was a tenth off a 2’06 lap with Milwaukee Yamaha’s Tommy Bridewell rounding up the top five with a 2’07.260 rotation. Waters fell back down to sixth on the sheets, with Westmoreland and title fighter Josh Brookes in eighth.
RAF Reserves Honda’s Peter Hickman and Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki’s Stuart Easton completed the top ten, with Showdown rider, GBmoto Kawasaki’s Chris Walker ending the afternoon 15th, with a 2’08.544.