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British SuperbikeMotorcycles

HM Plant Honda Fired Up As Showdown Continues

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Shane 'Shakey' Byrne - Photo Credit: Honda Racing

Shane 'Shakey' Byrne - Photo Credit: Honda Racing

Shane Byrne
and Ryuichi Kiyonari are looking to reclaim lost ground this weekend as the BSB Championship Showdown rolls into Silverstone. The HM Plant Honda riders find themselves playing catch-up after John Hopkins won both races with neither Byrne nor Kiyonari getting on the podium.

Byrne trails Hopkins by 23 points but is still positive ahead of the penultimate weekend of the season, believing the team have some tweaks that will move the CBR1000RR Fireblade closer to the front.

“I am looking forward to Silverstone and getting back out on the HM Plant Honda Fireblade. Basically, this weekend we are taking everything we have learnt so far this season and condensing it so that we can start in a stronger position. The team have been working hard since Donington Park to see what else we can try, but we have a few changes to refine in practice and then we will be focused on the races and doing everything we can to put the HM Plant Honda Fireblade back on the podium again.”

Kiyonari is even further away from the lead after his Honda broke down in race one at Donington, leaving with a solitary sixth place to show for his efforts. The Japanese rider is 50 points behind Hopkins but is refusing to relinquish his BSB crown without a fight.

“The first Showdown round at Donington Park was disappointing as we didn't score points in Race one, so at Silverstone we have to try and catch up in the points and get ourselves in a better position for the final round at Brands Hatch. The problems we have been having are not easy to solve, but I still think it is possible to fight with the other Title Fighters. The title won't be easy to win now but I haven't given up because anything can still happen; we saw that at Donington with Shakey and Michael. I will be trying hard to be back on the podium because I still want to win for the HM Plant Honda team.”

Team Manager Havier Beltran knows that there is no margin for error now and has challenged his riders to bounce back this weekend.

“It is now the crucial stages of the Championship Showdown and it is imperative for Shakey to be at the sharp end again this weekend and for Kiyo to make improvements. The whole team are looking forward to Silverstone and there is still all to play for in the championship. We all hope that we have a strong weekend that can put us in the position we need to be going into the final round at Brands Hatch.”

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MotoGP, Moto2, Moto3 and WorldSBK writer for The Checkered Flag. Contact: [email protected]
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