Gregorio Lavilla has left the opening round of the British Superbike championship at Brands Hatch with a slim championship lead as Ryuichi Kiyonari dominated a wet second race on Sunday, March 26, 2006.
Both Kiyonari and Lavilla gambled on tyre choices as most riders picked Intermediate tyres in changeable conditions. Kiyonari made the right choice with full wets as he quickly scythed past the early leaders and quickly built up a 20-second lead. At the midway point the brave choice of Slicks on Lavilla's bike began to make sense as the track dried, but heavy backmarker traffic meant that he couldn't capitlaise on the advantage, and when rain again fell, lost out on second place to Airwaves Ducati team-mate Leon Haslam.
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The weather gave some new names a chance to shine as Virgin Yamaha rider Billy McConnell held second place for much of the race before losing the rear as he strayed onto a damp white line and crashing out. Craig Coxhell got a good result for Hawk Kawasaki in fourth. Click here for the full results.
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Gregorio Lavilla began his 2006 British Superbike title defence with a win in race one at Brands Hatch as Airwaves Ducati team-mate Leon Haslam crashed out of contention.
The race was red flagged following the crash as the pair led the race. Haslam lost the rear of his Ducati as he entered Paddock Hill bend on lap 20, leading to an early end to the race, but the British rider has been declared fit for race two.
Second place went to Karl Harris on the HM Plant Honda, with the Stobart Honda of Michael Rutter in third. Ryuichi Kiyonari was fourth, with Johnathan Rea fifth. Shane Byrne was sixth, while Rizla Suzuki team-mate James Haydon fought back from 17th following a trip off the track to finished 10th. Tommy Hill also crashed, but was unhurt. Click here for the full results.
In British Supersport, Stuart Easton took the win from Cal Crutchlow and Eugene Laverty. Click here for the full results. Matthew Whitham won the R6 Cup race from Tom grant and Leon Hunt.