Byrne takes BSB double at Thruxton

Podium (photo by double red)Shane “Shakey” Byrne became the most successful rider ever in the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship as he completed a winning double at Thruxton to take his career victory tally to 44, one more than rival triple title winner Ryuichi Kiyonari.

“Winning that second race was very important to me as I wanted to become the most successful rider in the championship but there was nothing easy about it,” said Byrne. “Alex Lowes was pushing me all of the way, but even though the race was red-flagged early I have done the double and that makes me a happy man.”

The Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki rider was always at the sharp-end of the action at the super-fast Hampshire circuit, though in the opening race he had to make a determined move on the final lap into the last corner to pass Tyco Suzuki’s Josh Brookes who was relegated to second place.

Byrne explained: “I had a bit of problem with the brake and the bike started to vibrate and I was a bit nervous and getting out of shape, but I got Josh back at the chicane and I then thought there is no way you are going to come past me again!”

Samsung Honda’s Alex Lowes, who had started from pole, took third place ahead of the Buildbase BMW duo of James Westmoreland and Jon Kirkham, whilst James Ellison fought back from a fifth row start to claim sixth as his team-mate Josh Waters had crashed out unhurt early on.

Byrne again made a flying start in an incident-packed second race, which included two Safety Car interventions by the Nissan GT-R, the first of which came after Kiyonari crashed out on the opening lap, and then again as Lee Costello tumbled. The defending champion was leading as the race was stopped after an incident at the chicane involving Karl Harris and Tommy Bridewell, who sustained a leg injury.

Race one result:
1:Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki)
2:Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki) +0.301s
3:Alex Lowes (Samsung Honda) +0.663s
4:James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) +6.415s
5:Jon Kirkham (Buildbase BMW) +6.533s
6 James Ellison (Milwaukee Yamaha) +6.778s

Race two result:
1:Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki)
2:Alex Lowes (Samsung Honda) +0.245s
3:James Ellison (Milwaukee Yamaha) +0.656s
4:Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki) +0.757s
5:Michael Rutter (Bathams Honda) +1.819s
6:Keith Farmer (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +1.908

Championship standings after Thruxton:
1:Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) 91
2:Alex Lowes (Samsung Honda) 76
3:Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki) 66
4:James Ellison (Milwaukee Yamaha) 51
5:Jon Kirkham (Buildbase BMW) 42
6:James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) 27

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