BSB: Byrne sets early Assen pace

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Shane Byrne led the way on the opening day of proceedings at MCE British Superbike’s annual jaunt to Assen, topping the afternoon’s second free practice session ahead of series leader Leon Haslam.

Byrne pulled half a second on his rival with a lap some eight tenths under the official BSB lap record, with Haslam just 0.016 ahead of MotoRapido’s John Hopkins.

Josh Brookes was fourth quickest on the Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha, ahead of fellow title fighter Jake Dixon, who was injured last week in a Moto2 testing crash, struggled early session but jumped up the timesheets after a rear shock change mid-session to go fifth quickest overall.

Sylvain Guintoli showed improvement for the Bennetts Suzuki squad, showing his potential at a track he knows well from his world championship days placing sixth quickest ahead of the leading Honda of Dan Linfoot.


Peter Hickman, who led the morning’s opening session, was eighth after tucking the front at turn nine, with James Ellison and Christian Iddon completing the top ten.

Jason O’Halloran was another crasher in the second session, the Aussie went down at turn seven and rounded out the session 12th quickest.

Richard Cooper was quickest out of the three Superstock 1000 wildcards, going 11th quickest for Bennetts Suzuki. Tyco BMW’s Josh Elliott was 18th and Danny Buchan completed just eight laps on the FS3 Racing Kawasaki before a crash in FP1 and subsequent technical problem in the second session. 

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Oli Rushby

By Oli Rushby

Former sports reporter covering British Superbikes, World Superbikes and road racing