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Shakey vs Kiyonari: ‘War for Four’ MCE BSB titles kicks off at Brands Hatch

Wednesday, March 27 2013

The 2013 MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship kicks off at Brands Hatch on 5/6/7 April and the anticipation is already building as the two most successful riders in the series' history, Kent's Shane 'Shakey' Byrne and Japan's Ryuichi Kiyonari, prepare to commence battle in the 'War for Four' title victories.

Byrne, from Sittingbourne, returns to his home circuit to begin his title defence for the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki team and is just two race wins short of Kiyonari's record race-winning tally of 43. The pair have shown a similar pace in pre-season testing and both riders are fully focused on becoming the undisputed king of MCE BSB at the end of this year's 26 race-long Championship campaign.

Shakey said: "Brands Hatch is my home circuit and we want to get the season off to the best possible start. My Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki team have been working hard all winter to give me the best possible package and I am prepared to push it as far as it takes to win a fourth title. We would have liked to have done more laps in testing, but everyone is in the same boat so it should make it interesting! Pre-season everyone is talking about me and Kiyo but I think there is going to be a great deal more to come from the other riders too. I genuinely think this is one of the most competitive Championships in the world and I think the racing is going to be really exciting across the classes."

Kiyonari said: "I am looking forward to the first races of the season but I am also a bit nervous; I always get nervous before the start of a season! It is exciting for me to be back in the championship with Samsung Honda - testing has been good, but now all I want to do is race. I have come back to get good results again for myself, the team and the British fans. I want to show that I am not finished, that I can be faster and can win again. There are many good riders in the championship like Shakey, Alex (Lowes) and Josh (Brookes) so it won't be easy, but I will be trying very, very hard to win again."

The 2013 grid at Brands Hatch will feature a further six MCE BSB race winners, including last season's title contenders Josh Brookes at Tyco Suzuki and Samsung Honda's Alex Lowes, plus former runner-up James Ellison at Milwaukee Yamaha, who switches from MotoGP. The international field will also feature two domestic double champions as Italy's Matteo Baiocco bids for success for Rapido Sport Racing Ducati and Australia's Josh Waters makes his debut for Milwaukee Yamaha.

In addition to the two MCE BSB races there will be eleven support races including the consistently thrilling Motorpoint British Supersport Championship, plus the fabulous spectator viewing offered by the Indy circuit means fans won't miss any of the action!

Tickets for the opening round of the 2013 MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship at Brands Hatch on 5/6/7 April are available from £26, with free entry for children aged 12 and under. For more information call 0843 453 9000 or click  here.