Cadwell’s ‘Party in the Park’ beckons as MCE BSB contenders target Showdown positions
The fight to feature inside the top six of the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship standings rages on this weekend (August 18/19/20) at Cadwell Park, with just five races now remaining before the Showdown.
There have already been six different race winners so far this season and with a further five riders celebrating podium finishes in 2017, the battle to secure a place in the Showdown has never been closer.
Leading the standings into the annual event at the challenging Lincolnshire circuit is Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne and the Be Wiser Ducati rider has vowed to bounce back from a disappointing previous round at Thruxton when he scored a single fourth place.
Byrne shared the victories with arch rival Leon Haslam in 2016 and the JG Speedfit Kawasaki rider counts Cadwell Park as one of his strongest on the calendar, having won at least one race on each appearance at the circuit, and the existing lap record holder is eager to close the deficit to his Ducati rival.
Local contender Peter Hickman leapt up the leader board last time out at Thruxton as he claimed Smiths Racing BMW their first victory in the premier class. The Louth based contender elevated himself to third in the overall standings and is gunning to strengthen his position in the standings on Sunday.
Luke Mossey still holds fourth place after missing out at the previous round at Thruxton following a crash in free practice; the JG Speedfit Kawasaki rider is pushing to return to full fitness as he bids to hold on to a place in the Showdown.
Australian Josh Brookes added his name to the winners list at Thruxton and the Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha rider heads to Cadwell Park as one of the favourites with the crowd and equal on points with fellow countryman Jason O’Halloran.
Louth-based Honda Racing’s O’Halloran has only lined up twice in the Superbike class but O’Halloran, who lives in nearby Market Rasen, has high hopes for a repeat performance of his podium finishing double last season.
Just outside the top six, but within striking distance of firing themselves into contention include Knockhill double race winner Jake Dixon and Tyco BMW’s Christian Iddon with James Ellison and Dan Linfoot also determined to move up the order this weekend.
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship standings:
1.Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) 203
2.Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 184
3.Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) 164
4.Luke Mossey (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 161
5.Josh Brookes (Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha) 154
6.Jason O’Halloran (Honda Racing) 154
Meet the Riders!
The MCE British Superbike Championship returns to Lincolnshire this weekend (August 18/19/20) and ahead of the big ‘Party in the Park’ event at Cadwell Park, several of the leading contenders will be heading into Lincoln for an hour-long meet and greet session from 1pm this Thursday.
In association with Visit Lincoln, the teams and riders will descend on Lincoln High Street at Cornhill with Superbikes including the championship-leading Be Wiser Ducati of Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne, the home team Honda Racing’s Fireblade, plus the race-winning Smiths Racing BMW, plus the McAMS Yamaha.
From 1pm – 2pm fans can meet top riders for autographs and photos including championship leader Byrne, and Honda Racing’s Jason O’Halloran and Dan Linfoot, plus Thruxton race winner Josh Brookes, the McAMS Yamaha duo of James Ellison and Michael Laverty and Lincoln’s Lee Jackson.
Pirelli National Superstock 1000 Championship contender James Rispoli will also be meeting fans ahead of this weekend’s races.
For more information visit www.britishsuperbike.com
Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne
Be Wiser Ducati
“The last round at Thruxton taught us a valuable lesson because we arrived there feeling that we would be strong because of the previous year and it turned out to be a disaster. We have put that behind us now and I have been climbing the walls wanting to get to the next race and put it right.
“We tested at Cadwell Park recently and that went well and I know that the boys have been working hard since Thruxton too so that we can start the weekend in the best position we possibly can. I don’t think this weekend will be a walk in the Park but we know where we are at because of the recent test.
“My aim is to get back to fighting at the front this weekend and try and score as many Podium Points as possible because they are going to be what matter when we get to the Showdown.”
Smiths Racing BMW
“I am still on a bit of a high after the win at Thruxton to be honest! It was an awesome weekend for myself and the Smiths Racing BMW team – it was unbelievable to be honest and everything went right. The bike worked great and it was a fantastic weekend and I need to thank everyone for their support.
“We are feeling confident as a team and we have moved up to third in the championship standings now which is absolutely brilliant and now we head into my local round of Cadwell Park. I have had good results there in the past and I had my first win in the Superbike class back in 2014 so I would like to repeat that!
“I’m really looking forward to it because we had a good test there a few weeks’ ago and I equalled my fastest ever lap around there so I’m feeling confident and really looking forward to ‘Party in the Park 2017!”
More, from a press release issued by Be Wiser Ducati:
Cadwell Calling For Byrne And Irwin
Round eight of the thrilling 2017 MCE British Superbike Championship takes place at Cadwell Park this weekend when the biggest crowd of the season is set to descend on the Lincolnshire venue whereby the Be Wiser Ducati Racing Team are hoping to return to winning ways.
Five-times and defending champion Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne continues to lead the title race following his mid-season run of form which has seen him take five victories aboard the factory-backed Be Wiser Ducati Panigale R although he failed to add to that tally at Thruxton last time out.
There, a tyre issue in race two saw the Londoner’s first retirement in over a year which followed a fourth-place finish in the opening race at the fast Hampshire venue meaning for the first time since round two at Brands Hatch, he failed to score a podium. For some teams, a fourth-place finish would herald an amazing result but such is the level of success Paul Bird’s Penrith-based team is accustomed to, nothing short of podiums are expected now.
Byrne won at Cadwell Park last year to record only his second victory at a track he enjoys so he’s aiming to increase his winning tally further this year whilst Be Wiser Ducati team-mate Glenn Irwin continues his recovery from injuries sustained at Knockhill a couple of months ago.
The Ulsterman from Carrickfergus, who occupies 11th place in the table, was told to expect a 12-week absence from action but has continued to defy the odds by racing just five weeks after the crash which dislocated and broke his arm and shoulder. With every passing week, Irwin is getting stronger and has added to his points tally at the last two rounds also, but knows the undulations of Cadwell will be tougher than normal.
As well as leading the championship points table, Byrne importantly heads the Podium Points table too which will prove crucial when the Showdown stage of the season starts next month at Oulton Park. Byrne should be one of the six ‘Title Fighters’ to qualify but for Irwin, he only stands an outside chance now given his recent setback.
Shane Byrne: “In some ways, it seems like Thruxton was months ago, I’m that keen to put what can only be described as a massive disappointment as far behind us as possible, but in other ways it feels like it was yesterday. I’m looking forward to getting to the next race now at Cadwell Park and hoping to resume some sort of normal service, and by that I mean winning. Thruxton actually taught us as a team a bit of a valuable lesson, one I’m very keen to put to good use this coming weekend. There are only two rounds left now to gain as many Podium Points as I can and I intend to grab as many as possible to put myself in the best possible position for the Showdown.”
Glenn Irwin: “I’m looking forward to Cadwell Park this weekend after what was an extremely tough Thruxton for the whole team. I’m getting better with every day that goes by and I feel much stronger now. I’ve done some miles on the push bike this week which just hasn’t been possible before so I’m back to the mindset I had prior to the injury. Of course it’s going to be tough and I know what to expect, but I’m a lot better placed than I was going into Thruxton and the plan as ever is to score as many points as I can.”