The British Superbike Championship reaches the penultimate round this weekend at Silverstone as Shane 'Shakey' Byrne and Ryuichi Kiyonari prepare to close the point deficit in the overall standings as Jason O’Halloran returns from injury in the National Superstock 1000 Championship.
Shakey currently lies third in the standings, 25 points behind the championship leader following the opening Showdown round at Donington Park. Shakey had taken a fourth place in the first race before a collision with Michael Laverty in race two meant a determined ride back from a crash to eighth place. This weekend he is determined to make amends and put the HM Plant Honda Fireblade back on the podium in a quest to close in on the title leaders Kiyo meanwhile lies sixth in the standings and as he continues to regain his podium finishing pace the defending champion is seeking a stronger performance this weekend.
In the National Superstock 1000 Championship Jason returns from injury prepared for the final two rounds of the season. He has been sidelined since the Knockhill round following a crash but is looking forward to his return this weekend with the HM Plant Honda team.
Shakey said: “I am looking forward to Silverstone and getting back out on the HM Plant Honda Fireblade. Basically, this weekend we are taking everything we have learnt so far this season and condensing it so that we can start in a stronger position. The team have been working hard since Donington Park to see what else we can try, but we have a few changes to refine in practice and then we will be focused on the races and doing everything we can to put the HM Plant Honda Fireblade back on the podium again.”
Kiyo said: “The first Showdown round at Donington Park was disappointing as we didn’t score points in Race one, so at Silverstone we have to try and catch up in the points and get ourselves in a better position for the final round at Brands Hatch. The problems we have been having are not easy to solve, but I still think it is possible to fight with the other Title Fighters. The title won’t be easy to win now but I haven’t given up because anything can still happen; we saw that at Donington with Shakey and Michael. I will be trying hard to be back on the podium because I still want to win for the HM Plant Honda team.”
Jason said: “I can’t wait to get back on the HM Plant Honda Fireblade this weekend for the first time since my crash. I had waited to make a return when I felt that I would be able to ride like I need to and when I felt I had got my strength back to where it needs to be to race. Recently I have had a couple of rides on a Honda CBR1000 and it felt good, so I am looking forward to rolling out again on Friday and then getting some good results before the end of the season.”
HM Plant Honda team manager Havier Beltran concluded: “It is now the crucial stages of the Championship Showdown and it is imperative for Shakey to be at the sharp end again this weekend and for Kiyo to make improvements. The whole team are looking forward to Silverstone and there is still all to play for in the championship. We all hope that we have a strong weekend that can put us in the position we need to be going into the final round at Brands Hatch. It is also fantastic to have Jason back in the Superstock class this weekend as he has been out recovering since his crash in the race at Knockhill. The whole team is really motivated for this event so we are looking ahead to getting things underway on Friday in free practice.”