Ryuichi Kiyonari has reignited the war for four MCE British Superbike titles with a stunning win in the first race at Knockhill, holding back home favourite Shane Byrne to take a hard fought victory.
Byrne was an early leader, with the GBmoto Kawasaki duo of James Ellison and Chris Walker in close company. However, Kiyonari was forever looming, and the three time champion was able to dispatch first Stalker andthen, after a small mistake, Ellison.
Kiyonari was able then to hold onto the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki of Byrne, making a number of moves before finally making it stick to the chequered flag.
Kiyonari said: "It was hard to win but I am happy as at the start of the weekend my race pace wasn't as good. We have fixed some problems and my feeling is now much better and I felt I could really push. I want to do it again in race two - Shakey told me not to be greedy, but it won't be easy. I hope we can find some more for the second race because I want to try and win again."
Byrne was able to set the fastest lap of the race, however, while unsuccessfully chasing down Kiyonari, and will start race two from pole.