Motorcycling: Ducati quit threat dissipates

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The Airwaves Ducati team principal, Darrell Healey, has confirmed that British Superbike Championship leader Shane Byrne will race at Donington Park on Monday after a week of off-track controversy.

Byrne leads the field by 44 points going into the fourth round at Donington but Healey had threatened to pull the team out of the races this weekend after the Motorcycle Racing Control Board decided to change the rules to raise the minimum weight of the twin cylinder Ducatis by 10kg to 175kg.

Healey had said: "I am absolutely astounded that the changes have been introduced after only three race meetings. We, as a team, have spent tens of thousands of pounds testing and developing the Ducati 1098R based on what we thought were fixed regulations, but it is now clear that the MCRCB can clearly change the rules as and when they please.

"The bottom line is that we do not have the most competitive race bike performance wise, and that is clear for everybody to see, but both of our riders have been consistent over the first six races and that is why Shane leads the championship."

But after a week discussing ways to add the extra weight to his bikes safely Healey has decided to give Byrne the chance to add to his lead.

He said: "It has been a very busy week off the track but I am delighted to confirm that as a result of the amendments to the MCRCB Bulletin, addressing the team's safety concerns, Airwaves Ducati will be in a position to compete this Bank Holiday weekend."

Byrne has won four of the six races so far and is looking forward to putting the focus back on the track for the two races on Monday. "Not winning the double at Brands Hatch last weekend has got me really fired up for this weekend," he said.