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World Superstock 1000

Sunday 24th April 2011

HM PLANT HONDA STEAL POLE POSITION AND LAP RECORD AT BRANDS

The HM Plant Honda team began their title defence in the best possible way as Shane 'Shakey' Byrne lapped under the Brands Hatch Indy lap record to secure pole position on his return to the British Superbike Championship, just ahead of his team-mate Ryuichi Kiyonari who took the second spot along side Shakey.

The two HM Plant Honda Fireblades diced for the pole position with Kiyo first running under the lap record before Shakey went out for a final lap dash for the top spot, when he narrowly edged out the position by 0.080 seconds.

In the National Superstock 1000 Championship it was another pole position for HM Plant Honda as Jason O’Halloran topped the time sheet ahead of his race debut in the class.

Byrne said: “That was a great lap. I started Q3 on a used tyre and did a 45.5s lap but then I saw what Kiyo had done and I couldn’t believe it, he needs to slow down a bit! I wanted a front row start but then I saw what Kiyo did and just went for it with a new tyre. I went out and did a 45.1s and then I tried to get into the 44s but just couldn’t quite get there. That was a great session though and all credit to the HM Plant Honda team.”

Kiyo said:”That was a hard session as everyone was faster than before, but I pushed as hard as I could and was hoping for the pole position. I knew Shakey was going to be fast as we have been pushing each other all weekend. I need to find some more time tomorrow in warm up as it is so close on the circuit but I am feeling happy and want to get on the podium tomorrow for HM Plant Honda.”

Jason O’Halloran qualified on pole position for the opening round of the National Superstock 1000 Championship at Brands Hatch, posting the fastest time in the combined qualifying sessions.

Jason said: “The weekend has gone well and we have been consistently fast throughout the sessions. We have a good race pace and we know there are a few different changes we still would like to test in warm up tomorrow. I am happy that we will be starting from pole position and the lap was under the record pace so everything is good and I am ready to race now.”

Team Manager Havier Beltran concluded: “Today’s qualifying session was a fantastic start to our season; you can’t ask for more than the top two places on the grid in Superbike and then the pole position in the Superstock class. I think today has shown that all three riders have the potential to challenge for the titles, and it is still early days, but we couldn’t have asked for a better day. It has also shown the strength of the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade as it has proved to be the fastest bike on track in two classes today. We know the Indy circuit will bring highs and lows as it always does, but so far it has all come together for the HM Plant Honda team and we are looking forward to race day.”

 

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