Scott Moir was the home-town hero as he convincingly won the New Zealand Superbike Tourist Trophy race at Taupo on Sunday.
The Taupo racer seized the lead on the first lap and kept his Suzuki there for the full distance, stretching the lead to win by nearly five seconds – an unusually big margin in national Superbikes where the racing is usually very close.
Moir has been racing a variety of motorcycles – starting in motocross – but has now really arrived as a Superbike rider, in an extremely competitive field. He scored his first victory in this premier category at Timaru in January and now he has earned one of the sport’s major trophies, riding a Suzuki.
“That would be the biggest achievement of motorcycling career,” the elated Moir said. “It’s a pretty big deal.
“It all went according to plan. I got a good start, stretched the gap, got the lap record along the way, and backed it off a bit towards the end.
“I’ve been making improvements to the bike and it’s going better now.”
The Superbike Tourist Trophy (TT) race was the feature event at the third round of the national road-race championships. Other classes also had TT races for their categories.
Second today was Hamilton’s Nick Cole, who crashed out of Saturday’s opening race when the traction control on his Kawasaki failed because of an incorrect wheel fitment.
Wellington’s Sloan Frost, who won Saturday’s race just ahead of Moir, took third followed by championship leader Dennis Charlett from Christchurch and fast-rising Auckland teenager Jaden Hassan, both on Suzukis.
Charlett had only ridden on the tricky Taupo circuit twice before and regards it as his bogey track but was quite happy to keep racking up the points with finishes of fifth and fourth in the two races.
He now leads Cole by 24 points with five races to go in the double-header round at Manfeild next weekend.
The third races for the Superbikes and some of the other classes were not run because of an oil spill on the track.
Young Christchurch rider Alastair Hoogenboezem achieved his first victory in the 600cc Supersport category when he won the TT for Suzuki, and followed it up by winning the final heat as well. His younger brother James also finished in the top five in the two races, both riding Suzukis.
Reigning champion and points leader John Ross, also from Christchurch, actually finished first in the TT but was hit with a 20-second penalty for jumping the start on his Suzuki. He was credited with sixth.
Winners of TTs in other categories were: Superlite, Hayden Fitzgerald (New Plymouth, Suzuki); Pro Twins, Royd Walker-Holt (Kawakawa, Suzuki); 125 GP, Troy Guenther (Australia, Honda); 250 Production, Baillie Perriton (Ashburton, Kawasaki); and Sidecars, Spike Taylor-Astrid Hartnell (Masterton, LCR).
New Zealand Superbike Championships, round three, Taupo, day two provisional results. Each class had one race counting as the TT (Tourist Trophy) for that category.
Superbikes – Race one: Sloan Frost (Wellington) Suzuki 1; Scott Moir (Taupo) Suzuki 2; Linden Magee (Australia) BMW 3; Jaden Hassan (Auckland) Suzuki 4; Dennis Charlett (Christchurch) Suzuki 5.
Race two, TT: Moir 1; Nick Cole (Hamilton) Kawasaki 2; Frost 3; Charlett 4; Hassan 5.
Championship points: Charlett 157, Cole 133, Moir 110, Frost 94, James Smith (Christchurch, Honda) 79.
Supersport – Race one: Toby Summers (Taupo) Yamaha 1; John Ross (Christchurch) Suzuki 2; Adam Chambers (Clive) Honda 3; Alastair Hoogenboezem (Christchurch) Suzuki 4; Daniel Mettam (Auckland) Honda 5. Race two, TT: A Hoogenboezem 1; Summers 2; Jeremy Holmes (Invercargill, Honda) 3; James Hoogenboezem (Christchurch) Suzuki 4; Chambers 5. Race three: A Hoogenboezem 1; Ross 2; Summers 3; Chambers 4; J Hoogenboezem 5. Points: Ross 192, Summers 164, A Hoogenboezem 155, Holmes 105, Chambers and J Hoogenboezem both 81.
Superlite – Race one: Hayden Fitzgerald (New Plymouth) Suzuki SV650, 1; Zane Agate (Oamaru) Kawasaki ZXR400 2; Gavin Veltmeyer (Auckland) Suzuki SV650 3. Race two. TT: Fitzgerald 1;Agate 2; Veltmeyer 3.
125 GP: Tyler Lincoln (Hawke’s Bay) Honda 1; Troy Guenther (Australia) Honda 2; James Jarman (Whangarei) Honda 3. Race two, TT: Guenther 1; Jarman 2; Lincoln 3.
Pro Twins – Race one: Dean Bentley (Lower Hutt) Suzuki SV650, 1; Royd Walker-Holt (Kawakawa) Suzuki SV650 2; Robert Whittall (Raglan) Suzuki SV650, 3. Race two, TT: Walker-Holt 1; Whittall 2; Nick Southerwood (Auckland) Suzuki SV650 3. Race three: Walker-Holt 1; Whittall 2; Southerwood 3.
250 Production – Race one: Baillie Perriton (Ashburton) Kawasaki 1; Tim McArthur (Dunedin) Kawasaki 2; Lachlan Epis (Australia) 3. Race two, TT: Perriton 1; McArthur 2; Epis 3. Race three, TT: Perriton 1; McArthur 2; Grant Ramage (Timaru) Kawasaki 3.
Sidecars – Race one: Spike Taylor-Astrid Hartnell (Masterton) LCR, 1; AJ MacDonald-Glen MacDonald (Kaiapoi) Dunoon Suzuki 1000, 2; Peter Goodwin-Darren Prentis (Northland) LCR Windle, 3. Race two, TT: Taylor-Hartnell 1; Goodwin-Prentis 2; Michael Wolland-Neville Mickleson 3. Race three: Taylor-Hartnell 1; Barry Smith-Robbie Shorter (Te Puke) Windle Suzuki 2; Goodwin-Prentis 3.
© Words by Bernard Carpinter
© Photo by Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com
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