Suzuki Puts Money Where Its Wheels Go

Suzuki Puts Money Where Its Wheels Go

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The rumble from the hugely successful 2013 Suzuki Series continues to reverberate as the many fans among the New Zealand motorcycling community now brace themselves for the next onslaught, the 2014 series.

The three-round series has grown since its inception in 2008 to now rival even the national championships in terms of both rider and spectator popularity and the Wanganui-based Suzuki company was pleased this week to announce that it would continue to sponsor the competition.

“We are thrilled to have Suzuki come on board again,” said series organiser Alan ‘Flea’ Willacy, of Wanganui.

“They are such a brilliant company to work with and do some fantastic things for the sport in general too. It makes things easy for me to have such great support behind me.”

Regarded also as a pre-nationals warm-up competition, the Suzuki Series will this year kick off at Hampton Downs, near Meremere, on December 6, before heading to Manfeild, near Palmerston North, for round two a week later, on December 13-14. It wraps up again at the iconic Cemetery Circuit, on the public streets of Wanganui, on Boxing Day.

It used to be called the Suzuki Tri Series and, while it remains a three-round series for now, expectations are high that it will expand in the near future, such has been the growing popularity of the competition since its beginnings just over six years ago.

“The entries are already starting to flow in,” said Willacy.

“We have had so many enquiries from overseas. Things are obviously already starting to warm up for the December kick-off.”

Last year’s series attracted a good number of international visitors, including flamboyant Englishman Guy Martin, Italian supermotard ace Malachi Mitchell-Thomas, German pair Thomas Kreutz and Steve Mizera and a slew of Australians – Chris Seaton, Craig Trinder, Linden Magee and father and daughter pair Phil and Sophie Lovett.

Martin was the central character in the movie “Closer To The Edge” released in New Zealand cinemas in 2011, a no-holds-barred, behind-the-scenes film about racing the legendary Isle of Man circuit, and his appearance on Wanganui’s Cemetery Circuit just after Christmas was a delight to many fans of the sport.

Christchurch’s Dennis Charlett (Underground Brown Suzuki GSX-R1000) won the Suzuki Series’ Formula One class in 2012 and came close to winning it a second time in 2013 before being pipped at the post by Hamilton Kawasaki rider Nick Cole.

Now-retired Suzuki ace Andrew Stroud, of Hamilton, consecutively won the first four editions of the Suzuki Series, before losing out to Charlett in 2012, making it five Suzuki winners in the premier F1 class out of six in the competition’s short history thus far.

Charlett carried on from the Suzuki Series to win his first New Zealand Superbike Championship title just a few weeks later.

For further information contact Simon Meade, General Manager of Motorcycle / ATV Marketing, simon@suzuki.co.nz.

Words and photo courtesy of Andy McGechan, BikesportNZ.com