To finish off 2021, we are closing the year up with Shane Byrne taking the December spot for our ‘Biker of the Month’. Shane, also known as ‘Shakey’ was born on December 10th and he is quite an icon in the biking world, to say the least.
When reflecting on his childhood, in interviews Shane states that being a motorcycle racer has always been his dream job. In an interview with Crash, the Lambeth-born racer remembers working for London Underground. Following this Byrne lost his car license, so he decided to pursue his dream as a racer. This was when he applied to be a test rider for Fast Bikes Magazine. One day whilst trialling a Ducati 996 SPS, Byrne caught the eye of former Rally Driver and Motocross Rider Paul Bird.
…and into racing Shane goes!
The world first saw Shakey when he made his debut at the British Superbike Championship back in 1999. Back then he was riding a Kawasaki privateer. In the following year he remained with the same team but this time he raced a Honda. Unfortunately, an injury would force him to retire from the competition early. In 2001 Shane would race a privateer Suzuki and he would finish in 8th place.
In 2002 he would claim his first race win at Donnington competing with his teammate Michael Rutter for Renegade Ducati. The attention of the press and fans would also bring forward the attention of another familiar name, Paul Bird. It’s safe to say that Paul was impressed yet again. Later that year, PBM would sign Shane up for the seasonal MonsterMob Ducati, and Shane would go on to win the Supersport title.
The only way is up for Shane Byrne!
2003 was another very special year for Shakey. He was at BSB yet again, and little did he know, behind all his anticipation, that his self-belief would be strong enough to earn him the title for this year! He won a total of 12 wins, 5 poles, and 21 podiums from 26 races that year. This was sure to boost his rep and earn him even more fans all over the world.
In short, the following decade (and a bit) would prove very successful for Shane. There was a nice mix of seconds and thirds, completing the rounds of his own championship with a total of 6 BSB wins. Aside from the 2003 title, the other successful years were 2008, 2012, 2014, 2016, and 2017.
Motorcycle Racing can be a dangerous game
Shane claims that his mother will happily record her son’s races to watch back later just to make sure he’s ok. It was probably a good thing that the 2018 Snetterton Testing wasn’t one that she would’ve recorded anyway. This was a very daunting test in Shane’s life, and certainly one that he won’t forget. During the practice session on his Ducati, Shane plummeted into a safety barrier resulting in some very serious injuries, breaking the most major bones in the upper body, including his neck, back, and collarbone.
The future of his career
It doesn’t come as any surprise to us that Shakey is taking a break from the tracks. Since his injury, he has had various televised works that consist of presenting-style jobs. We’re sure his mum would be happy to watch these ones live! In 2019 Shane published a book, Unshakable.
The Byrne Family Life
In his spare time, when he gets any, Shane enjoys spending time with his family in one of their two properties. He married his wife Petra back in 2010, and shortly after they tied the knot they had 2 children, a son, and a daughter.
Last Month: November – Guy Martin