Shakey wins the 2016 British Superbike Championship

Shane ‘Shakey' Byrne secured the 2016 British Superbike title at Brands Hatch beating his nearest rival, Leon Haslam with a race to spare. It was a record breaking fifth title for the Be Wiser Ducati rider and Ducati's first British Superbike Championship win since 2008.
The weather was to be a dominant factor throughout the weekend with conditions often treacherous as the cold and wet October weather lashed the Brands Hatch circuit. It was however a broken handlebar that was to be one of the turning points of the weekend. Leon Haslam was on track for Q2 when a broken handlebar meant the Kawasaki rider had no choice but to lay down his bike to prevent a serious incident. Despite the rider being unhurt, Haslam was unable to complete Q2 and had to start from 17th on the grid.

Title rival Leon Haslam has lined up back on the grid back in 23rd position while Shakey started Race 2 from the 2nd row in 5th place. As the flag dropped Byrne found himself back in 10th position with Haslam on his shoulder in 11th. Haslam was finding conditions tricky and going off line meant he was to lose four places.

Shakey moved up a place but found his progress blocked by Bridewell who was leading a large group of riders distant from the leaders. Places were to swap between Mossey and Shakey for 12th position while team mate Irwin was again having a strong race in 6th.

Byrne finally got past Bridewell at half race distance and immediately posted his best lap time as he chased down Mossey. Mossey was shadowing Haslam and Smrz. Haslam was making progess through the field as Smrz was the next to be taken. Byrne continued to stay in touch with his title rival as Haslam tried to gain enough places to take the title fight to the final race. However despite the Kawasaki rider moving into fifth place he could not shake off Byrne and they crossed the line with only 0.091 between them but more importantly 26 points between them enough to make Byrne the 2016 British Superbike Champion for the fifth time. Team mate Irwin followed him home to finish in 7th.

Shane ‘Shakey' Byrne - Be Wiser Ducati Team
"It's a massive achievement to take on a new manufacturer in Ducati who haven't won a title since I last won a championship for them in 2008. At the same time I am a little bit disappointed today as I am a racer and I want to win races so the positions I have finished in the first two races have not been great but the history books say I am five times champion and is a big weight off my shoulders.

I am really proud of what we have done. We have turned a bike that has not won in the last few years into a bike that has won 9 races and the title first time out, so I know we are only going to get stronger. I am keen to sign a new deal with the team and Paul Bird who has been such an influence on my career and even a multi- deal as there is no other team I would rather be with. I am really, really happy with the bike, it's a fantastic piece of machinery and when you can ride the bike at 99.9% it is incredible. It's so smooth but when it is not right it can be tricky because it is an out and out race bike so it's taken us a while to get our head a round things. A massive thanks to Be Wiser, Ducati and Paul Bird and looking forward to the party tonight." 

Glenn Irwin - Be Wiser Ducati Team

"It was good race. I was sort of hanging on to that leading group. There were just a couple of things with the bike I wasn't happy with so I was struggling in certain areas with people getting away. When Dan came by me I felt strong to go with him and at one stage I felt like I'd get him back. But I ran deep into Druids and made a wee mistake but I was very, very nearly off but I got away with that. There's not too much at stake for me and I wasn't going to do anything stupid. It was nice to see when Leon and Shakey came by what Shakey was able to do. I was working it out on the last lap trying to keep Jason behind me.
It was really cool coming up to the line and see Shakey's board say 2016 P1. He's ridden like a champion all year. Congratulations to the whole Be Wiser Ducati Team. The bikes are brand new to everyone in here apart from Giovanni but for Shakey to be the 5 time BSB Champion and me to pick up podiums in my rookie season with 1 more race left to go it's a great, great testament."