Four-time and defending MCE British Superbike champion Shane 'Shakey' Byrne has vowed to bounce back this weekend at Cadwell Park following a disappointing round at Thruxton earlier in the month where he relinquished the lead in the title race.
Along with the Penrith-based Paul Bird Motorsport team, they endured a tough weekend at the fast Hampshire track although Byrne salvaged a second and fourth place finish to seal his position in the all-important season-ending Showdown which will determine the destiny of this year's title.
Having spent the most part of the three week gap in between rounds training in Spain, the 38-year-old Londoner heads to the Lincolnshire track full of confidence and is hoping to add to his tally of nine podiums at Cadwell Park. But he knows the challenge he is up against given main rival Josh Brookes is on a good run of form but is confident he can get back to winning ways aboard the PBM Kawasaki ZX-10R.
Shane Byrne: "Thruxton was far from ideal for us and neither I nor the team was happy with our performance. So in situations like that, we do what we do best and we work out what the problems are and we sort them, it's the best thing about the PBM team. I'm never satisfied with myself either so I've been away in Spain since we left Thruxton and I've trained harder than I've ever trained in my life. You only get out of life what you put in and both I and the team will do whatever it takes to become champions again.”
Meanwhile, team-mate Stuart Easton is still unfit following his Brands Hatch crash in July which saw him sustain a broken lower left leg and right ankle. The 31-year-old Scot, who holds fourth in the standings, is targeting a comeback at the next round at Oulton Park in two weeks' time as he hopes to clinch one of the remaining Showdown places.
Stuart Easton:"Things are progressing well and my plan is to race at Oulton Park. The doctors have told me that this is a typical twelve week injury yet we are aiming to come back within six weeks and they don't see any reason why not. As bad as it sounds, I'm hoping all my main rivals don't have too much success at Cadwell this weekend as I need to still be in with a shout of the Showdown in the three races at Oulton Park. I won there earlier this year and it's my favourite track so hopefully we can be on the pace again.”
The PBM team are fielding just the one machine at Cadwell Park this weekend following the conclusion of the deal with Ian Hutchinson to ride in the three major International road races this year, which culminated in another podium finish at the recent Ulster Grand Prix.
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship standings (after seven rounds)
1 Josh Brookes 266pts
2 Shane Byrne 254
3 James Ellison 147
4 Stuart Easton 139
5 Michael Laverty 115
6 Tommy Bridewell 112
Image courtesy of Jon Jessop Photography: Shane Byrne (67) and Stuart Easton (5) in action