Byrne's title delayed

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The Independent Online

The runaway British Superbike championship leader, Shane Byrne, skidded out of race one in a ninth round which saw victories for Steve Plater and then Yukio Kagayama here yesterday.

The Ducati rider Byrne was hoping to clinch the title despite an off-par qualifying performance which saw him start from the second row of the grid for the first time this season. However, his charge through the field was abruptly ended in the 11th lap on a track drying out following morning rain.

"I was on the outside of Yukio, who was late braking for the corner," Byrne said. "He ran a little wide, just clipping a damp patch. But I had nowhere to go, ran through it, lost the front end and went down. It was a case of wrong place, wrong time."

In the second race, Byrne was fourth with Kagayama benefiting from John Reynolds' machine problems to win.