Shane 'Shakey' Byrne still in the hunt for silverware for Penrith's Be Wiser Ducati

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In the title hunt: Shane "Shakey" Byrne is third in the championship standings going into this weekend (Photo: Jon Jessop)
Jon Jessop
In the title hunt: Shane "Shakey" Byrne is third in the championship standings going into this weekend (Photo: Jon Jessop)

The final round of the 2017 MCE British Superbike Championship takes place at Brands Hatch this weekend – with Penrith’s Be Wiser Ducati team still in the hunt for silverware.

Having led the series until recently for Paul Bird’s Lake District-based team, Shane “Shakey” Byrne occupies third place in the standings following a disastrous run of luck in recent rounds aboard the factory-backed Be Wiser Ducati Panigale R.

But “Shakey” arrives at his local track in confident mood after he claimed a superb double victory in the summer.

Byrne has won a total of 17 BSB races around the Kent Grand Prix track as well as two World Superbike races and can count on his legions of fans to add to the support at the triple-header race weekend where he is 33 points behind series leader Leon Haslam and just one point adrift of his bitter rival Josh Brooke.

Last year, the title scrap was just as intense and it was Haslam’s turn to be out of luck at the final round, leaving Byrne to claim a record-breaking fifth title and such is the nature of the world’s best domestic Superbike championship, Shakey knows anything can, and probably will, happen.

“Well it’s here, the final round of the year and it’s all still to play for,” Sittingbourne-based Byrne said.

“While it looks like Leon has one hand on the trophy, all it takes is a mechanical issue or a crash and it would turn everything completely upside down.

“I’m going to Brands Hatch with the same intention and approach as any other round and that’s to try to win all the races.

“Hopefully, with a fair chunk of luck on our side, which we’ve lacked massively lately, it’ll be enough to get the job done. If not, we’ll go down fighting that’s for sure.”

Team-mate Glenn Irwin is hoping to get back to the sort of form which saw him take victory at Silverstone last month aboard the Be Wiser Ducati Panigale R to round off a frustrating season for the Northern Irish rider.

The 27-year-old has had to contend with the serious injuries he sustained mid-season which ultimately cost him a place in the title-deciding Showdown, but is hoping to play his part in backing up Byrne by taking points off his rivals.

Irwin said: “It’s hard to believe this is the last round and, in some ways, I’m looking forward to the off-season to reset after a year of ups and downs.

“That said, I’m going all out at Brands Hatch this weekend as there’s a job to be done both for myself and if I can help him, for Shakey too.”

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