No 7 to be dropped from British Superbikes

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As a tribute to the late Barry Sheene, the number 7 will be dropped from British Superbikes, and its support classes, from this season.

The decision was made by the promoters and organisers of the series, in conjunction with the Sheene family. This means the number 7 will be removed from all races under the control of the British Racing Drivers Club. The highest profile rider affected is Rizla Suzuki’s Yukio Kagayama.

Kagayama has traditionally used the number 7 throughout his racing career in Japan, but will use the number 71 this season. ” I’m happy to give up the number 7 for Barry’s family, because of his great racing achievements ” said Kagayama.

The decision has meant a lot of last minute work for the Suzuki team before the series begins on March 28. But spokesman Jason McLean said, ” We’re very happy to support this tribute. He was a great ambassador for the sport, and Suzuki, winning both of his world championships with us. It was an easy decision to make. ”

The first race of the 2003 season will also be marked by a two minute silence, which will take place just before the first race. Other memorials have yet to be confirmed.

” I’m sure there will be a memorial event of some kind, but that decision will have to be made in close consultation with Barry’s family, ” said Stuart Higgs of race organisers the BRDC. ” Withdrawing the number 7 is the most fitting thing to do at this time. ”

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MCN Staff

By MCN Staff