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Donington Park British Superbikes: Shane Byrne sets pole in rain-hit qualifying

Published: 25 May 2008

Updated: 24 November 2014

Airwaves Ducati’s Shane Byrne will start from pole for tomorrow’s Donington Park British Superbike round in a wet session Shakey called ‘treacherous’.

Byrne secured his third out of four poles for the season this weekend,, carrying the extra 10kg weight ballast as set for qualifying by the race organisers earlier in the week.

Shane Byrne said: “To be honest, the conditions at the very end were really wet and treacherous.

“It was so wet it was almost dangerous and I nearly sat the end of the session out.

“But when Michael [Rutter] went pole I couldn’t have that so I went out again.

“We’ll be happy tomorrow, wet or dry.”

Byrne’s fastest lap of 1.46.639 was a full second in front of Hydrex Bike Animal Honda’s James Ellison.

The times were a long way off this mornings Free Practice 3 session and yesterday’s 50-minute practices as the British Superbike boys had to contend with wet conditions for the first time this weekend.

Many riders showcased their wet riding ability at the notoriously difficult GP circuit which becomes extremely slippery in damp conditions.

And many were caught out by the greasy surface including early-doors front-runner Billy McConnell who crashed twice, as did Karl Harris and Michael Howarth on the Cup Tena for Men Honda.

North West 200 Ducati’s Michael Rutter racked up a solid front row start for tomorrow with a third fastest time in front of Cal Crutchlow who rounded off the top four.

Michael Laverty and Scott Smart were the shocks of the session with a fifth and sixth postion start for tomorrow respectively, ahead of Leon Haslam in seventh who also took a tumble and Leon Camier.

Gary Mason leads the Cup riders with a ninth position on his debut for the Quay Garage Honda team after James Buckingham stepped down after Brands.

RESULTS

1. Shane Byrne Airwaves Ducati 1.46.639
2. James Ellison Hydrex Bike Animal Honda 1.47.687
3. Michael Rutter North West 200 Ducati 1.48.101
4. Cal Crutchlow HM Plant Honda 1.48.265
5. Michael Laverty Relentless Suzuki 1.48.267
6. Scott Smart Hawk Kawasaki 1.48.609
7. Leon Haslam HM Plant Honda 1.48.829
8. Leon Camier Airwaves Ducati 1.49.023
9. Gary Mason Quay Garage Honda 1.49.250
10. Karl Harris Rob Mac Racing Yamaha 1.49.338
11. Billy McConnell MSS Discovery Kawasaki 1.49.665
12. Chris Burns STP Superbike MV Agusta 1.49.776
13. Tom Sykes Rizla Suzuki 1.49.915
14. Stuart Easton MSS Discovery Kawasaki 1.49.997
15. Tom Grant SMT Honda 1.50.255

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