Market Rasen-based British Superbikes rider Ryuichi Kiyonari’s frustrating start to the season continued last weekend after breaking his collarbone in a fall.
The Japanese racer suffered the injury after a fall on his Bennetts Suzuki GSX-R1000 as he prepared for round three of the championship at Brands Hatch.
The crash occurred at the Graham Hill bend during the second free practice session with the three-time champion losing the front at the downhill left-hander early in the session.
Kiyonari missed the remainder of the weekend, and will now focus on getting fit for the fourth round at Knockhill in late June.
He went into the weekend looking for an upturn in fortunes after tyre problems saw him fail to finish both races at Oulton Park last time out.
And he seemed to have found his pace as he posted the fastest time of the session shortly before the accident.
Kiyo relinquished top spot on the timesheets as the session progressed, but such was the Japanese rider’s pace around the Brands Hatch Indy circuit, it was still enough to claim fourth place by the end.
Kiyo said: “I’m very disappointed because I was feeling really good and really fast on my bike, but unfortunately I made a small mistake and it has ended my weekend.
“I didn’t have enough load on the front as I braked for turn three, and it tucked underneath me.
“It’s gone from upright, which is why I went down quite hard and have fractured my collarbone. It is a shame because I set a quick time quite early in the session and maybe could have gone faster,
“I wasn’t pushing too much from the start, so it is a real shame. I’m sorry for the team because I was feeling confident and they were working hard.
“Now I will focus on getting fit for the next round. There is a bit of time, and I’m hoping to be back for a test at Snetterton, but definitely for Knockhill.”
The next round at Knockhill, in Scotland, takes place on Sunday, June 26.