Dismal start to season for Byrne

Shane Byrne's hopes of laying the foundation for a possible World Superbike title challenge came to nothing after two accidents left him pointless at Phillip Island

The British rider has endured a tough weekend on the sole Sterilgarda Ducati having spent much of the weekend attempting to make up for missing last week's pre-season test at the same circuit.

However, his fortunes failed to improve in the races, Byrne languishing on the fringes of the points in the first race following early tyre problems when he took a tumble at the seven lap mark and couldn't continue.

Hurting his hand in the process, Byrne went ahead and started the second race, but having risen to just outside the top ten, he fell again at Honda and was consigned to his second retirement of the day.

Admitting it has taken him until this weekend to realise how close the competition is in World Superbikes, Byrne is now turning his attention to the next round in Qatar.

"It was bad luck,” he said. “I had a good start in race one, but I noticed that the tyres were slipping in an odd way in the early laps. I tried to recover, but after seven laps I slipped off. Although I had a hand injury, I didn't give up and started race two as well.

“I had a pretty good start, but after 11 laps, while I was trying to overtake Smrz, I got very wide on the corner. I tried to hold trajectory but the bike locked up and I crashed. Nevertheless, I am beginning to understand how hard-fought the SBK is, especially in the first laps.”

For team manager Marco Borciani, the first round is a world away from their headline-grabbing performance during testing in Portugal a month ago. Nonetheless he is confident Byrne will come back for the second round even stronger.

"We've had a lot of bad luck on this track. We haven't done well but we won't lose heart. We know we have a great rider as he managed to set the third time during warm up despite being the only top rider who doesn't know the track.

“He was confident he could score a great result... Nevertheless, I'm sure he will redeem himself in Qatar where he has already raced and factory teams haven't tested for some time. Anyway, our championship will start in fifteen days time.”

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Byrne, Australian WSBK 2009
Girl, Misano WSBK 2017
Taylor, SSP300 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati pack up for long haul, Misano WSBK 2017
Empty Yamah garage,  Misano WSBK 2017
Yamaha pack up for long haul, Misano WSBK 2017
Rinaldi, Faccani and Scheib, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Faccani and Rinaldi, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Scheib, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Faccani, Rinaldi and Scheib, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Faccani, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Faccani, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Rinaldi, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Scheib, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Faccani, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Marino, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Razgatlioglu and Tamburini, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Rinaldi, SSTK1000 Race, Misano WSBK 2017

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Dale - Unregistered

March 01, 2009 9:54 PM

Nitro, Fact - You are rude, arrogant & abusive - & you think (incorrectly) that you're always right. I have yet to see the championship determined by weather effected pre-season tests or warm-up times - which most riders & teams simply use as a final check that the bike has been put back together 100%. But, if as you insist, he was '3rd fastest' ... then how come he didnt come through the field with Nori & Max? The race happened on RACE TYRES so qualy tyre issues are a feeble excuse. Others that qualified badly raced well. The tone of your posts is insulting. You should get some manners & stop being a yob.

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