Oulton Park: Byrne hopes for rain to boost attack from midpack

Shane Byrne says it would suit his Be Wiser Ducati if the races at Oulton Park were wet as he looks to charge from 18th on the grid.
Shane Byrne says it would suit his Be Wiser Ducati if the races at Oulton Park were wet as he looks to charge from 18th on the grid.

The MCE British Superbike championship leader suffered a high side crash at the exit to the Hislops chicane in Q2 which dumped him out of qualifying and the four-time BSB champion will start from the back of the sixth row in race one.

Despite the disappointment of his lowly qualifying spot Byrne remains upbeat he can battle through the midfield after settling on a promising wet set-up in the soaking FP3 session before qualifying.

“I'm fired up for tomorrow! I really, really enjoyed my bike in the wet and was confident today despite not having to great deal of time,” Byrne said. “It feels mega. We made quite a big change overnight for something we wanted to try in the dry and we went with it but turned it into a wet one. The bike still works really, really well in the wet and it should make it even better in the dry.

“The grip on the side of the tyre is never the strongest, however, the Ducati has a smooth and soft feeling at the bottom of the revs. We made a mistake today and I'm sorry to the boys because they have some work to do but it was far better to go down on the second one rather than the first one because it would have been massive. A little bit frustrating but we will try to turn it around tomorrow.”

With mixed weather conditions predicted for the May Bank Holiday race day at the Cheshire circuit Byrne is hoping for rain to boost his race pace against those in front of him on the grid, as he looks to add to the two second place finishes from the 2016 season opener at Silverstone.

“I think it would be a blessing for us to get two wet or semi-wet races because it might be awkward if it is dry now,” he said. “Either way, wet or dry, I will try my best to fight my way through. In the dry it will be much more difficult. While we got to within two or three tenths of the top of the timesheet I was not far from happy being happy with the setting of the bike but we hadn't created an Oulton Park bike.”

Tagged as: Byrne , Shane Byrne

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