Reigning double BSB champion Shane Byrne hasn't got the results expected during the first three rounds of his first full World Superbike season, but his Sterilgarda Ducati team believes all that's needed is a decent qualifying performance.
Byrne currently sits 14th in the championship with a best finish of sixth in race one at Losail, an event he started from the back of row two, in eighth position. Shakey's other qualifying positions have been 15th (Phillip Island) and twelfth (Valencia).
"I hope that this time everything will go well,” said team manager Marco Borciani of this weekend's Assen event. “Shakey has proven till now he can be really fast, even when he is not physically at his best [Byrne had knee problems at Valencia].
“We were pretty unlucky at Valencia, especially during practice when we missed opportunities to get a good start. As a consequence, we will focus on practice at Assen.
“In a hard-fought competition like the WSBK is, in order to score great results you have to start from the front or second row of the grid so that you don't waste valuable time on the first corners.
“We learned our lesson in Valencia and although Shane had a great race pace that could've enabled him finish in the top five, his starting position on the grid prevented him from doing better,” insisted Borciani.