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Shane Byrne tops BSB standings after Brands double

Shane Byrne went top of the British Superbike standings after double success at Brands Hatch.

The wins, Byrne’s 16th and 17th BSB victories at Brands, followed up his double from Snetterton last time out and gave him his third King of Brands title in four years.

The Sittingbourne Be Wiser Ducati rider is now 29 points clear of JG Speedfit Kawasaki’s Luke Mossey in the standings after rain brought an early end to race one and Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha’s Josh Brookes crashed out while chasing Shakey down in race two.

Shane Byrne on his way to victory at Brands Hatch Picture: PSP Images
Shane Byrne on his way to victory at Brands Hatch Picture: PSP Images

Byrne said: “The first race was a lot tougher than what I was hoping for but the safety car coming out did me a favour and I got going straightaway again.

“The bike had felt really good all weekend in the dry and we were able to prove that in the race so a big thank-you to the team. The pace was even hotter in the second race and with a good start decided I had to get to the front as quickly as possible and go for it.

“Once I’d got the lead, I just tried to stay as consistent as possible and watched my pit board. I just kept my rhythm and concentration so to get the double is brilliant and we’re achieving just what we wanted to at our strong circuits.”

The lead changed hands several times in the opening race, which saw a first safety car of the season after Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha’s Shaun Winfield suffered a big crash. Byrne, starting sixth on the grid, charged through the field after dropping to ninth to edge ahead with two laps to go.

Honda Racing’s Dan Linfoot had been on course for his first-ever BSB win after battling with Mossey, Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW), Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) and Christian Iddon (Tyco BMW) before Byrne’s move at Surtees. His timing could not have been better as moments later the arrival of light rain brought out a red flag, with Linfoot second and Haslam third.

The hunter became the hunted in race two as Byrne battled to keep Brookes behind. But on lap nine, again at Surtees, Brookes crashed to leave the trailing pack fighting among themselves.

James Ellison (MCAMS Yamaha) finished second and Iddon completed the top three.

Three rounds remain before the end-of-season Showdown, starting at Thruxton on August 4-6.

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