Byrne and Irwin to ride PBM Ducati in 2016 MCE BSB
Shane Byrne will make a switch from Kawasaki machinery to that of a Ducati for the 2016 season, it has today been announced. The four time MCE BSB champion heads to Brands Hatch this weekend in the knowledge that it is unlikely that he will secure the championship title due to Josh Brookes' blisteringly fast pace that he has been unable to match in the latter part of the season.
It has been known that team boss Paul Bird has been unhappy with the levels of factory support offered to other teams in the paddock, most likely contributing to the breakdown in relations combined with the Milwaukee Yamaha outshining the PBM Kawasaki this year.
Glenn Irwin will move up from the British Supersport class and replace Easton who was unable to compete in the last few rounds having sustained injuries. Irwin has impressed in the Supersport class and will be looking to do the same when he makes his debut at Silverstone in April.
They will ride a fully factory-supported Ducati Panigale R and will head to Valencia immediately after Brands Hatch to get to know the motorbike and hopefully hit the ground running when the MCE BSB rolls around next year.
Paul Bird, Team Owner commented: '2016 will be our 21st consecutive year in racing and we are the first team to confirm our line-up for next season, which demonstrates our intention of challenging for the MCE BSB championship. In Shakey we have the most successful rider in the history of the series and we know he'll be very competitive.'
This announcement is incredibly exciting for the series; it will be great to see Byrne back on a Ducati and most likely continuing his 'Strive for Five' campaign. However, 2015 isn't over yet, we're sure he'll be after some vital wins and hoping to give the Kawasaki a proper send off!
16.10.2015 - Big Ed