Japanese rider Ryo Mizuno will make his WorldSBK debut at the Emilia-Romagna Round as he substitutes for the still-recovering Eric Granado
There will be a new name on the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship grid during the Pirelli Emilia-Romagna Round at the iconic Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli”. With Eric Granado still deemed unable to race by his doctors, the PETRONAS MIE Racing Honda Team have drafted in Japanese rider Ryo Mizuno to complete their line-up in Italy with Mizuno making his WorldSBK debut and he is set to race alongside Hafizh Syahrin, subject to the Malaysian rider passing medical checks after he was declared unfit in Barcelona.
In 2022, Mizuno competed in the British Superbike championship with Honda and finished 23rd in the standings with a best result of 11th in the second race at Brands Hatch. The 25-year-old competed in the Asia Talent Cup in 2014 where he finished sixth in the standings with a podium to his name at the Sentul International Circuit in Indonesia and he finished behind riders such as Moto3™ race winners Kaito Toba and Ayumu Sasaki. Mizuno also has experience in the MotoGP™ paddock, making one-off races in Moto3™ in 2015 and Moto2™ in 2017. This season, Mizuno is competing in the Japanese Superbike championship and currently sits fourth in the standings after three rounds.
Mizuno will become the first Japanese rider since Kohta Nozane to race in WorldSBK as he makes his debut in the World Championship on the CBR1000RR-R machine usually raced by Eric Granado. Granado remains unfit after suffering a concussion in a crash in Barcelona, so Mizuno will line-up alongside Syahrin – although the Malaysian rider was also declared unfit after a crash also in Barcelona and will need to pass medical checks at Misano. It meant neither rider tested at Misano in the Dorna Supported test a few weeks ago with Tarran Mackenzie the sole MIE Honda rider at the test.
Explaining why he won’t race at Misano, Granado said: “I’ve been slowly regaining my strength in the weeks since my crash and feel good actually, physically and mentally. As a rider I would like to race, and feel ready, but the doctors have said I can’t compete at Misano. After the crash I spent a week in hospital, after which the doctors would only let me walk, no other kind of training and at the moment it would be unwise to race. The important thing is that I feel good in myself, so I’ll focus on gradually getting back into my training in order to be ready for the Donington round.”
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