Yanagawa wins Tsukuba

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Team Green Kawasaki rider Akira Yanagawa won the third round of the All Japan Superbike series at Tsukuba at the weekend but Honda’s Tatsuya Yamaguchi continues to the lead the series after finishing fourth in the race.

Suzuki factory test rider Kousuke Akiyoshi grabbed his first podium of the season, taking the Wins GSX-R1000 to second place.

He smashed the lap record to grab pole position, but Yamaha’s Norrick Abe led him and Yoshimura Suzuki's Atsushi Watanabe into the first corner before Akiyoshi took the lead before the end of the opening lap.

The race was red flagged twice due to fallen riders in the track and on the final restart, Abe led again with the Suzuki men further back in the pack.

Akiyoshi moved from fourth to second after passing Takashi Yasuda and Yoshimura Suzuki's Daisaku Sakai and then started reeling in Abe, eventually passing him on lap 13, but he couldn't catch leader and eventual winner Akira Yanagawa (Kawasaki).

Results:
1 Akira YANAGAWA (Team Green Kawasaki)
2 Kousuke AKIYOSHI (Wins Suzuki RT)
3 Norick ABE (Y's Gear Racing Yamaha)
4 Tatsuya YAMAGUCHI (Moriwaki Honda)
5 Yusuke TESHIMA (Team HRC Honda)
6 Takashi YASUDA (Harc Pro Honda)
7 Nobuyuki OOSAKI (SP-Tadao Honda)
8 Daisaku SAKAI (Yoshimura Suzuki)
9 Atsushi WATANABE (Yoshimura Suzuki)
10 Takeshi TSUJIMURA (TSR Honda)

Championship Points: 1: YAMAGUCHI 58, 2: WATANABE 57, 3: YANAGAWA 52,  4: AKIYOSHI 49, 4: ABE 49, 6: YASUDA 48,  7: KAMEYA 39, 8: OSAKI 36,  9: MORIWAKI 35, 10: SAKAI 35.

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Gary Pinchin

By Gary Pinchin