Both of Shane 'Shakey' Byrne's Rizla Suzuki GSX-R1000 K6 race bikes were stolen last night [Tuesday] from a locked garage at the Croft circuit in North Yorkshire - with the team offering a ?10,000 reward for their safe return.

The bikes were garaged in preparation for the start of the official MCRCB two day test at the Yorkshire circuit, which was due to start on this morning [Wed]. The team left the circuit at around 20:00 on Tuesday evening and returned at 08:00 this morning to find the garage door open and the two bikes missing along with parts and accessories. Airwaves Ducati and Redbull Honda also had parts stolen last night - with the police and circuit security called to the scene and an investigation now underway.

"The priority now is to try and recover these stolen bikes," Rizla Suzuki team manager Robert Wicks said. "They are two very distinctive Rizla Suzuki race bikes littered with hand-made parts and marked accessories that are useless to anyone bar a Superbike race team. Even if the bikes are broken down the parts will remain identifiable and we will do everything within our power to trace them.

"We are giving our full co-operation to the police to find these bikes and bring the thieves to justice. The team is offering a reward of ?10,000 to anyone who can help the police with their investigation that leads to the bikes being recovered and the thieves successfully prosecuted. Anyone with any information or suspicion should contact 01202-820170. Alternatively they can call the police direct."

The theft of the bikes scuppers the two day test for Shakey and the team.

"Shakey's bikes were tailored to suit him with one-off fitments and hand-built engines that took months to complete," Wicks explained. "To replace these will be immensely difficult, it sets us and Shakey back a long way.

"The thieves who have stolen these bikes are not fans of the sport or friends to motorcycling in any way, they are simply thieves. I urge anyone with information to come forward and expose these thieves for the good of the team, Shakey and the legions of BSB and race fans in this country."

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of the stolen bikes is urged to call Darlington Police on 0845 6060365 or Rizla Suzuki direct on 01202 820170 or to e-mail pressoffice@rizla-suzuki.co.uk. Any information supplied in confidence will remain in confidence.

The hard working Rizla team are now doing what they can to get Shakey and Brendan Roberts out on track so that their trip to Croft isn't wasted. Despite the huge set back of losing two machines, it is business as usual.