Shane “Shakey” Byrne knows a thing or two about superbikes. The Lambeth, England, native has six British Superbike Championships to his credit. He’s also a race-winning Superbike World Championship rider and has claimed his share of points in MotoGP. So, when number 67 says a superbike collection is the best in the U.K., you listen.
Granted, the owner is Byrne’s close friend, but it’s hard to argue with a stockpile of rare Honda and Ducati superbikes. If name-dropping is the name of the game, Byrne (and his collector friend) have you beat. From Niall Mackenzie to Steve Hislop, from Carl Fogarty to Davide Tardozi, tales from the paddock flow freely in the Magnolia Office (as the Late Brake Show’s Jonny Smith calls it).
Even if you’re not a racing fan, the collection provides star power all its own. Whether you lust after the Ducati 888 SP2 or the Honda RC30, this superbike assemblage aims to please. Of course, any Ducati superbike collection would be incomplete without the 916, 999, 1098, and 1299, but the collector doesn’t restrict himself to Bologna’s V-twin days. The firm’s fire-breathing V4 makes an appearance in several forms, from the Panigale V4 SP to the Superleggera V4 to the race-prepped Panigale V4 R.
Even a secret room full of Honda race bikes sweetens the pot. Colin Edwards, Nicky Hayden, and Jake Gagne race machines add to the name-dropping fest, but an RC213V-S rightfully steals its share of the limelight.
In the end, Byrne asks Smith if he could own one bike from the collection, which one would he take? While Smith admirably selects Steve Hislop Ducati and RC213V-S, the only correct answer to that question is the Fogarty Ducati 916. Personal biases aside, no decision is the wrong decision in this horsepower heaven. With that said, which bike would you take from the collection, and is the collector missing any must-have pieces?