Eventful start at Suzuka
Three hours into the race, Yamaha Factory Racing Team is ruling the roost at Suzuka, ahead of Team Green and Yoshimura Suzuki Shell Advance. An eventful start has pushed a few of the favourites out of the leading pack.
The early stage of the race was eventful, with a brilliant start by Ryuichi Kiyonari for Team Kagayama ahead of Dominique Aegerter on the F.C.C. TSR Honda, Takuya Tsuda for Yoshimura Suzuki Shell Advance and Katsuyuki Nakasuga, who’d started from pole for the Yamaha Factory Racing Team.
Nakasuga quickly pushed back up in the slipstream of Team Kagayama’s Suzuki. The first drama occurred on the 6th lap – a crash by Dominique Aegerter, who managed to get back to the pits with the F.C.C. TSR Honda, currently lapping beyond 40th place with a 10-lap delay.
Katsuyuki Nakasuga put Yamaha Factory Racing Team in the lead before finishing his stint, ahead of Team Kagayama, who went on to experience a problematic pit stop followed by a flat. Team Kagayama has slipped to 4 laps behind the leader.
Musashi RT Harc-Pro, who were well placed to chase a win, have also slipped to the bottom of the standings after a mechanical issue.
Suzuki Moto Map Supply seem well anchored in 4th place just ahead of YART Yamaha Official EWC Team: the best placed of the teams competing in the FIM EWC championship. Also in the top 20 three hours into the race are Team Kawasaki SRC, Honda Endurance Racing, Team R2CL, Team Bolliger Switzerland, Team April Moto Motors Events and GMT94 Yamaha – who have grappled with a wheel problem since the start of the race.
Initially in the top 10 after the first hour, Suzuki Endurance Racing Team have downgraded to 10 laps behind the leader after a crash.