Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search


Superbike Race Winners Impossible to Predict

2018 NZ Superbike Championships

Superbike Race Winners Impossible to Predict

MARCH 13, 2018: It has been gripping viewing right from the start and it's fair to expect more of the same entertainment in Taupo this weekend too.

Race winners in this season's New Zealand Superbike Championships have been impossible to forecast in a series that has so far produced so much of edge-of-the-seat dog-fighting.

In the premier Superbikes class, the title hopes of Taupo's Scott Moir were buried two months ago, but he showed he was no quitter and he once again proved his trophy-winning potential at the third round of four in the nationals at Hampton Downs just over a week ago.

And he'll no doubt be a potent force at the fourth and final round on his home track in Taupo this coming weekend (March 17-18).

The 33-year-old won weekend overall in the superbike class at Hampton Downs, but there were actually three different winners in the premier class that weekend, making it almost impossible to predict who might win races at Taupo.

Moir's 2-1-3 score-card in the three Superbike races gave him the edge at Hampton Downs over series leader Sloan Frost, the Wellington man taking a “safe and sensible” approach to protect his points lead, while Glen Eden's Daniel Mettam, claimed the third step on the podium.

Frost refused to be drawn into some of the intense battling that took place at Hampton Downs, "doing just what was required" to continue his relentless march towards the 2018 championship title.

That policy worked a treat too, because Frost therefore avoided tangling with trouble, while several of his key rivals each suffered disastrous crashes at the North Waikato circuit.

Frost had started the weekend a solid 24 points ahead of his nearest challenger, Whakatane Honda man Mitch Rees, and his 1-3-4 score-card over the three Superbike class races was surprisingly enough for him to boost to 47 points his advantage over Rees.

Australian visitor Robbie Bugden (Yamaha) won the all-important third and final Superbike race of the weekend at Hampton Downs, the 15-lapper that also came with TT Trophy title honours.

Rees, Mettam, Bugden, Christchurch’s Alastair Hoogenboezem (BMW), Rees' younger brother Damon Rees (Honda) and Lower Hutt’s Jay Lawrence (Suzuki) each crashed out of a race at Hampton Downs, costing them dearly.

There is still plenty at stake at Taupo this weekend and perhaps Tauranga's Regan Phibbs (Biggles Racing Team Yamaha R3), is one of several riders who will have special reason to celebrate if he can hold it all together this Saturday and Sunday.

He leads the way in the Supersport 300 class and, if all goes to plan, will collect his first national title on Sunday afternoon.

The 24-year-old accountant has a 33-point advantage over Christchurch's multi-time former national champion Dennis Charlett, but, as we have seen in other classes earlier this season, even a buffer that size can quickly disappear when things go wrong.

An example of that can be seen in the Supersport 600 class where Christchurch rider James Hoogenboezem saw his 10-point advantage change to a 31-point deficit as his Underground Brown Triumph team-mate and fellow Canterbury man Jake Lewis took over the championship lead at Hampton Downs.

"The margins between me and Dennis (Charlett) have been very close, but Taupo is one of my favourite tracks and I'm hoping to do well there," said Phibbs, confident that he can finish the job this weekend.

Meanwhile, the points leaders in each of the other championship classes also look relatively safe, although the intensity of the racing at Hampton Downs would surely suggest that nothing is guaranteed in this sport and anything could still happen at Taupo's Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park this weekend.

Other class leaders after three of four rounds are: Hamilton's Jordan Burley (650 Pro Twins); Christchurch's Nick Cain (250cc Production); Huia's Nathanael Diprose (Superlites); Rodney's Blayes Heaven (125GP); Pukekohe's Thomas Newton (GIXXER Cup); and Auckland's Peter Goodwin and Kendal Dunlop (Sidecars).

The 2018 New Zealand Superbike Championships are supported by Honda Cars, providing safety/medical vehicles, Pirelli tyres, Corprint, CTAS and MX Timing and the inaugural GIXXER Cup is supported by Suzuki New Zealand.


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Joseph Cederwall Review: NZSO Plays Zappa

The first of the NZSO’s Shed Series concerts at the more informal and intimate space of Wellington's Shed 6 last Friday night featured music composed by, or with a connection to Frank Zappa. Zappa, a psychedelic rock legend, activist and popular culture figure and all round colourful character, was an excellent choice for the concert’s theme of innovation. More>>

Let The Games Begin: PM Sends Best Wishes To Athletes

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has sent her warm wishes to the New Zealand athletes preparing for the opening of the Commonwealth Games on Australia’s Gold Coast... More>>


Scoop Review of Books: Martin Edmonds' The Expatriates

This book is an extension of, and tribute to, the life’s work of James McNeish. Without sacrificing any degree of authorial independence, the result is gracefully written, handsomely produced, and likely to propagate many further works of its kind. More>>

Max Rashbrooke Review: The King's Singers and Voices New Zealand

To be good at one thing is impressive; to be so versatile across a range of genres is truly exceptional. More>>

Joe Cederwall Review: WOMAD 2018 - Harmony of Difference (part 1)

A friend described WOMAD as his “favourite white middle class celebration of diversity.” There is certainly an echo of truth to this as the crowd is still largely white and middle class, but this WOMAD for me represented that a better world is possible ... More>>

Harmony of Difference (part 2)

Top international world music artists seldom make it down to this neck of the woods, so for those of us into this sort of thing WOMAD is certainly a welcome addition to the cultural calendar. Now it is a case of waiting and looking forward to seeing what they manage to conjure up for next year. More>>

Howard Davis Review: A Bigger Splash - Te Papa Celebrates Twenty Years

Considering the available resources, this is a decidedly hit-and-miss affair, mainly due to some highly questionable curatorial decisions. In their overweening wish to "push boundaries," Charlotte Davy and Megan Tamati-Quennell have made a number of serious miscalculations by ignoring a basic rule - keep it simple. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland