BSB - Byrne completes hat-trick to win BSB title

Shane Byrne impressively completed a hat-trick of wins at the final round of the 2012 British Superbike season to deservedly win his third career title.

Eurosport
BSB - Byrne completes hat-trick to win BSB title
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Shane Byrne wins the BSB title

Only disaster would have seen Byrne not be crowned British champion after the third and final race at Brands Hatch with his second victory of the weekend giving him a 23-point lead.

And disaster didn’t strike as the 35-year-old, in second for 18 of the 20 laps of race three, timed his move on second-place Josh Brookes to perfection to claim the win.

At the same round at the same venue this time last year Byrne won two of the three races but he had to make do with third overall as Tommy Hill dramatically beat John Hopkins to the title.

However there was to be no denying the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki rider this time around as he completed a remarkable set of races since entering the Showdown for the title.

His three wins at Brands Hatch meant he failed to finish outside the two during the last three rounds – all after entering the Showdown under an injury cloud.

Byrne injured his shoulder at Cadwell Park and missed that round plus the trip to Donington Park but he was formidable upon his return to add to his BSB titles from 2008 and 2003.

With Brookes effectively needing to win and Byrne to finish lower than 14th to dramatically win the BSB title, it was unsurprising that those two roared to the front early on.

Brookes gained the advantage over Byrne at the first corner and held onto it as the Showdown riders dominated the top six – Alex Lowes, Michael Laverty, Hill and Tommy Bridewell all up there.

Lowes in third and Laverty in fourth managed to establish a healthy advantage over Hill and Bridewell however they found the pace set by Brookes and Byrne up front too much to topple.

In contrast to many of the previous races in the Showdown, the season finale was largely uneventful although Byrne’s move on Brookes with less than two laps to go sparked life into proceedings.

Entering the final lap Lowes clipped the first bend and lost his WFR Honda and with it took out Laverty, that allowing Hill to finish third with Bridewell just off the podium in fourth.

MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Brands Hatch, race three result:

Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki)

Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki) +0.328s

Tommy Hill (Swan Yamaha) +4.445s

Tommy Bridewell (Supersonic BMW) +4.511s

Barry Burrell (Buildbase BMW) +17.899s

James Westmoreland (WFR Honda) +20.199s

Peter Hickman (Buildbase BMW) +20.265s

Jon Kirkham (Samsung Honda) +20.389s

Chris Walker (Pr1mo Bournemouth Kawasaki) +20.974s

Noriyuki Haga (Swan Yamaha) +22.736s

MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship final standings:

Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) 683

Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki) 655

Tommy Hill (Swan Yamaha) 612

Alex Lowes (WFR Honda) 584

Michael Laverty (Samsung Honda) 581

Tommy Bridewell (Supersonic BMW) 577

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