Snetterton British Superbikes: Shane Byrne scores fourth pole in rain-hit qualifying session

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Shane Byrne boasts his fourth pole position out of five attempts this season with the fastest time in this afternoon’s qualifying session, that’s been shortened due to rainfall.

The start of the session saw a frantic rush to post an early fast time with the rain imminent in the sky at the Snetterton circuit, and with 28 minutes left in the 50-minute session the heavens opened to cut it short.

Shane Byrne left it very late to set his best time as drops of rain started to fall, and he only just managed to scrape the top position away from Cal Crutchlow by 0.099 of a second.

Byrne said: “It’s been a tough couple of week’s with all that’s gone on. But everything has worked fantastically here, and so has the team.

“I really like this track, even though it has been pretty cruel to me in the past.
“In all my career I don’t think I’ve had so many poles – I think it’s down to not using a qualifying tyre.

“We can run fast and consistently with a race tyre and that’s helped us secure pole positions this season.”

And nobody had the opportunity to respond to Byrne’s lap, as heavy rain at turn one and the back section of the circuit forced the entire field to return to their pit garages.

However, many riders took advantage of shortened session to sort out a wet setup if the same happens tomorrow.

There were only two casualties of the session – MSS Discovery Kawasaki’s Stuart Easton had an off at the Bomb Hole in the dry, while Guy Martin slid off in the wet at the Esses.

Leon Camier and Leon Haslam made sure it was an Airwaves Ducati and HM Plant Honda-only front row, both lapping within four tenths of Shakey Byrne.

The second row for tomorrow will be made up of Tom Sykes, Karl Harris, Michael Rutter and Relentless Suzuki’s Michael Laverty.

Snetterton British Superbike qualifying results:

1. Shane Byrne Airwaves Ducati 1.05.162
2. Cal Crutchlow HM Plant Honda 1.05.261
3. Leon Camier Airwaves Ducati 1.05.420
4. Leon Haslam HM Plant Honda 1.05.497
5. Tom Sykes Rizla Suzuki 1.05.540
6. Karl Harris RM Racing Yamaha 1.05.905
7. Michael Rutter North West 200 Ducati 1.05.941
8. Michael Laverty Relentless Suzuki 1.06.007
9. Billy McConnell MSS Discovery Kawasaki 1.06.082
10. James Ellison Hydrex Bike Animal Honda 1.06.113
11. Simon Andrews Jentin Lloyds British Yamaha 1.06.521
12. Atsushi Watanabe Rizla Suzuki 1.06.566
13. Tristan Palmer Tena for Men Honda 1.06.673
14. Scott Smart Hawk Kawasaki 1.06.782
15. Stuart Easton MSS Discovery Kawasaki 1.06.816
16. Gary Mason (Cup) Quay Garage Honda 1.06.924


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Rob Hull

By Rob Hull