Friday, September 22, 2006

British Superbikes - Still All To Play For

Prior to the Silverstone round of BSB, Leon Haslam had eked out a small lead in the championship race. However, his unscheduled hop-off in race one, along with two flawless rides from HM Plant Honda's challenger Ryuichi Kiyonari, have closed the gap. Now Greg Lavilla leads the championship by a single point from Kiyo, with Haslam just 8 points further back.
Normally this would be worrying with just one meeting to go, but the cancellation of the Mondello round has led to double points being awarded in the finale at Brands Hatch.
This means there will be a difference of 10 points between the 1st and 2nd steps on the rostrum in each race, with 50 points for a win and 40 for second place.
If Haslam wins race one, he will lead the championship into the final race whoever finishes second. The single point gap between Greg and Kiyo is almost meaningless, and will only matter if they both score identical points in the meeting.
All BSB races are thrillers, but the final meeting should be one to remember, with the possibility of riders leaping several positions in the championship. Somebody like Shakey Byrne, Karl Harris, Tommy Hill or Johnny Rea could really stir things up with a win, leaving the championship contenders battling amongst themselves for a podium.
Kiyo is on awesome form, Haslam has a point to prove after his 1st race crash at Silverstone, and Lavilla, who has struggled a little recently, is vastly more experienced than his two young challengers and will be looking to take the title with him to WSBK.
It should be a real sizzler.

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