Following on from his record-breaking fourth MCE British Superbike Championship title in 2014, Paul Bird Motorsport rider Shane 'Shakey' Byrne added one of the most coveted trophies in British motorcycling to his collection by winning the prestigious Torrens Trophy.
38-year-old Byrne, originally from London but now living in Kent, attended the Royal Automobile Club's premises in Pall Mall to collect the award along with team boss Paul Bird, for whom he will defend his title again this season.
Byrne is the most successful rider in MCE BSB history with 61 race victories to his name and continues the successful association with the Torrens Trophy for the PBM Team whose previous riders James Toseland and 2013 recipient Tom Sykes are also previous winners.
The Torrens Trophy was first awarded in 1978 in memory of Arthur Bourne, a motorcycling journalist who wrote a column under the name Torrens. Arthur Bourne was also a vice-chairman of the Royal Automobile Club. The trophy is awarded to an individual or organisation considered to have made an outstanding contribution to the cause of safe and skilful motorcycling in the United Kingdom or to have made an outstanding contribution of technical excellence to further the cause of motorcycling in the United Kingdom or to have shown outstanding skill in international motorcycling sporting events in the United Kingdom.
Shane Byrne: "To be recognised for achievements in motorcycling by the RAC is fantastic and a great honour for both me, my PBM team and the MCE British Superbike Championship. I've worked so hard over many years to achieve my success and awards like this really do make it worthwhile. To see Tom's and James' name on there also means a lot to me too, Tom and I were PBM team-mates back in 2007 riding for Paul. Right now I'm looking forward to getting my title defence underway and can't wait to get back out testing on the Kawasaki."
Paul Bird, Team Owner: "This recognition is well deserved and the whole team is delighted for Shakey. He's been a big part of our success for many years and it's an honour to be acclaimed by such an institution as the RAC for his efforts. It's not every day you get an invite to go somewhere like that! It's testament to our team that the likes of James and Tom have won it too, both of whom went on to win World Championships after riding for us."
The opening round of the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship takes place at Donington Park on 4/6th April 2015