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Byrne back in MotoGP for Le Mans?

"Maybe we will let Shakey have a run out on the bike and rest James for a meeting" - Paul Bird.
Shane Byrne could be set to make a shock MotoGP return in the forthcoming French Grand Prix at Le Mans, from May 18-20.

Byrne currently rides Kawasaki machinery for Paul Bird's PBM British Superbike team, but Bird is also running fellow Briton James Ellison on a CRT Aprilia in MotoGP this year.

However Ellison has been struggling with massive chatter and is one of only two riders yet to score a point.

Speaking on British Eurosport's coverage of Monday's Oulton Park BSB round, Bird revealed that Byrne could take Ellison's place at Le Mans and therefore make his first MotoGP appearance since 2005.

"It's something I have been milling over for a couple of meetings," said Bird. "James seems to be lacking a bit of confidence and is complaining about massive chatter with the bike.

"Obviously Shakey has ridden at Le Mans a couple of times and maybe we will let him have a run out on the bike and rest James for a meeting.

"That way we can have another view of what the bike is like, to see if we do have a severe chatter problem, but, you known, Casey Stoner has severe chatter problems and still wins the race, so we will have a look...

"I've asked James if he wants to run at Le Mans but I think we would get another view of what the bike is like. It's our first [MotoGP] season so maybe it's time for a management decision."

Byrne raced for Aprilia, Team Roberts and Honda Pons in MotoGP from 2004-2005, but never completed a full season due to injuries or team issues.

'Shakey' has since raced in WSBK (where he had previously won as a wild-card) and BSB. Byrne took his first BSB title with Bird's team in 2002 and claimed a second crown with Airwaves Ducati in 2008.

Ellison previously raced in MotoGP from 2004-2006.

UPDATE: Byrne later took his first win of the 2012 BSB season at Oulton Park on Monday.

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cant stand the man - Unregistered

May 07, 2012 2:11 PM

paul bird really is a hateful man. I'm not a huge ellison fan, but at least let him try and sort out the problems with birds crappy little bike instead of denting his confidence further. paul bird - the man who binned hizzy for being too old


May 07, 2012 2:11 PM
Last Edited 1907 days ago

How about Birdy get the bike sorted rather than benching his rider? Does he think Shakey is Stoner and that his rolling steaming pile of poo Aprilia which isn't up to the task of the other Aprilias is a Honda? I don't rate Ellison all that much but to bench him because he's complaining about chatter is ridiculous. The 3rd race just finished and Birdy admits he's been thinking about this for a while? Fix the damn bike - that's on the team not the rider. Let Shakey concentrate on BSB. If he goes out and gets hurt and screws up his BSB season how dumb will that look?

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