Byrne becomes 2014 British Superbike champion

The 38-year-old makes history by becoming BSB champion for a fourth time

SHANE 'Shakey' Byrne has become the 2014 British Superbike champion, his fourth British Superbike title. 

Buildbase BMW's Ryuichi Kiyonari was unable to race any of the three races this weekend at Brands Hatch after crashing in Free Practice three and fracturing his left collarbone. 

Milwaukee Yamaha's Josh Brookes commented on Kiyonari's misfortune during the post-qualifying press conference at Brands Hatch. 

'I can’t help but think what sort of voodoo s**t Shakey is up to. He never seems to get a bad string of luck, it always seems to play into his hands. It’s devastating to see the championship finish with Kiyo lying on the floor this morning,' said Brookes. 

Byrne hit back, saying: 'It’s not voodoo, it’s consistency. To win a championship you have to be on the podium all the time. We’ve had our fair share of bad luck, I fell down and lost a big championship lead in Assen. I’m not so sure that any voodoo s**t has been going down, at the end of the day I’m here to win.

'I think it’s disrespectful. I didn’t go and push Kiyo off, Josh needs to get himself together and be a little more professional and respectful.'

Aside from press conference drama, Byrne went on to win race two and race three on Sunday after crashing out of race one on Saturday. 

The 38-year-old said yesterday: 'The circumstances in which I won it weren't ideal. I would have dearly loved for Kiyo to be out there with me and to try and fight with him over these three races.

'We had a tiny points advantage over him and only he and I that could win the championship. The fitting thing was that the two of us had both won three before so whoever did win it was going to be the first rider to ever win four.'

Byrne went all out in 2013 to attempt to become the first ever rider to win four British Superbike Championship titles. But after crashing out at Assen, his hope of making history slipped out of reach. Instead, Alex Lowes took his first British Superbike title before making a move to World Superbikes. 

'I never made [Kiyonari] fall down, you know I fell down yesterday and it could have gone either way. The race plan was the same as always. I got a good start and I wasn't very aggressive at all,' said Byrne. 

'I led for a lap or two and then Howie [Mainwaring] come diving up the inside of me at Druids, and he's a good mate of mine and I thought 'oi get back, what are you doing? You're supposed to be my mate!''

Recounting the race, the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki rider commented: 'All these thoughts running through your mind and I thought just back off, you've got a gap. And then I thought, no because every time I do that I fall off!

'Like I said I can't say enough how sorry I am that Kiyo's not here, and how we couldn't win it fair and square with the two of us going for it, but at the end of the day you can only race who's on the track and I raced those guys and beat them to take the title so I'm delighted,' concluded the 2014 British Superbike Champion.