Official: Byrne to WSBK.

Shane Byrne has confirmed that he will not return to defend his British Superbike Championship in 2009 after revealing he is leaving GSE Racing to pursue a deal in the World Superbike Championship.

Although the identity of his new employers remain unknown, Byrne is set to become the fourth British rider to be confirmed on the World Superbike grid next year.

Speaking to after winning his second career BSB title at Silverstone, Byrne admits he is sad to be leaving the team with which he has won 19 podiums in 22 races this season.

"It has been one of the best experiences I have had in my career. I am made up with the team and my team-mate, my mechanics, my bike... It has been a fantastic year, so I am sad to be leaving. We need to try and progress though and World Superbikes are the next step, so that is where I need to be."

GSE Racing team manager Colin Wright led the praise for Byrne, who's title win signals the team's fourth.

"On behalf of the whole of the Airwaves Ducati team and GSE Racing I would like to thank Shane for a fantastic year. It has been a pleasure to work alongside Shane on the way to a fourth championship win for GSE Racing and we wish him all the best for 2009 and beyond."

Byrne's whereabouts in 2009 remains a topic of speculation, with Sterilgarda Ducati, Aprilia and perhaps Yamaha the most obvious berths for the Kent rider.

Spotted in the Sterilgarda garage at World Superbikes last weekend, Byrne has also been linked with Aprilia after riding for them in MotoGP back in 2004.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Bennetts British Superbike Championship Winner. Shane ` Shakey ` Byrne.
Noderer, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
De La Vega, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Loureiro, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Deroue, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Perez, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Noderer, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Noderer, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Valle and Deroue, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Deroue, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Noderer, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Noderer, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Deroue, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Perez, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Giacomini, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Deroue and Valle, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Bastianelli, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK
Loureiro, SSP300 Race, Aragon WSBK

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Nitro Nori

September 29, 2008 12:33 AM

Who needs MotoGP if 2009 ends up how it's looking currently... Best season ever - 7/8 major manufacturers (Ducati, Aprilia, BMW, Yamaha, Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki - maybe even MV Agusta), Biaggi on an Aprilia, Spies and Zemke in from AMA, Sykes, Rea, Haslam and Byrne (maybe on a works Ducati) all in from BSB. Pity the season can't start two weeks after Portimao !!

Mark c - Unregistered

September 28, 2008 11:37 PM

Can't work out why Haga even wants to go to Ducati. Without Troy to worry about and the new R1 which is said to be hot poop (well Yanaha say it is anyway) It would be his best shot at a title next year. Byrne should be on the works Ducati for no other reason than he just won them the BSB title. Hope he stays at Ducati with xerox or sterilgarda (does anyone know what sterilgarda is by the way) because he just flies on them. Eurosport must be crying into thier pints at the minute - they lose MotoGP but gain BSB then all the quick BSB riders **** off to WSBK. At least they still have that.

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