Shane 'Shakey' Byrne has admitted he is 'desperate' to taste victory at Brands Hatch this weekend despite arriving with a comfortable championship lead. The HM Plant Honda rider can mathematically secure a place in the “Showdown” this weekend but has confirmed he won't change his approach.
“I am obviously looking forward to Brands Hatch as it is my home round and I do have such good memories from there. I desperately want to win this weekend and I know we have the Kawasaki World Superbike team also racing, but that won't change my goal and the races are going to be ones to watch! We won on the Indy circuit at the opening round but you can't really compare the two, all I know is that I need to concentrate solely on winning again as we haven't in the past rounds. I know we have had the pace but it just hasn't worked out, but this weekend will be so important for the championship with three races and we will be pushing hard to make sure we stay ahead at Brands Hatch.”
In the three-week gap since Oulton Park, Ryuichi Kiyonari has enjoyed success at the Suzuka 8 Hour endurance event. The Japanese rider enters this weekend in good form and is another rider relishing the challenge of the Brands Hatch GP circuit.
“I am happy because there are three races at Brands Hatch and it is one of my favourite tracks on the calendar. I think it will be a good weekend for the fans, because it is going to be so close, but that means harder for us riders! It is important to do well at Brands Hatch because it will be the same track as the final round so we need to be fast. There are many riders that can win there, but I need to be strong like I was when I won at Oulton Park earlier in the year. The top four riders you know are going to be fast and fighting for the win, but there are other riders too that could be there and we have the Kawasaki WSB coming too. I think we can win; we have made lots of progress with the HM Plant Honda Fireblade so we need to go out and push hard. I have the number one plate on my bike and that means I should be up the front fighting for the win and nothing less.”
With the championship showdown places decided after the next round at Cadwell Park, Team Manager Havier Beltran admits that this weekend's meeting is highly important for the team.
“Brands Hatch is always a big round and the HM Plant Honda team have celebrated some fantastic results there in the past. Both Shakey and Kiyo have been very competitive there in the past and the three-race format should make for some fantastic racing weekend for the fans. It is getting tougher now as we are getting closer to the Showdown as every point is crucial.”