News Release

Hamilton’s Andrew Stroud is certainly consistent, consistently fast.

29 December 2008
Hamilton’s Andrew Stroud is certainly consistent, consistently fast.
Hamilton's Andrew Stroud (Suzuki), off to a flying start this season.. PHOTO BY: Andy McGechan - BikesportNZ.com

The Suzuki star wrapped up the inaugural ProMoto Tri-Series at the weekend’s third and final round at Taupo on Sunday, adding a convincing superbike class win there to his class wins at the opener at Manfeild just over a week ago and round two on the streets of Wanganui on Boxing Day.

He kicked off the series with back-to-back superbike wins at Manfeild a week before Christmas and then won the day on the twisty, curb-lined public streets of Wanganui on Boxing Day when he finished first and third in his two superbike outings.

 

He then took his Suzuki GSX-R 1000 to a hat-trick of wins at Taupo on Sunday.

 

“It was a great series and a perfect build-up to the nationals,” said Stroud.

 

“Winning the series like this is all about scoring points and being consistent,” said Stroud, referring to the fact his perfect record was spoiled when he did not win both races at Wanganui.

 

“I wasn’t prepared to risk everything by going too fast at Wanganui,” he explained. “Look at what happened to Australia’s Gareth Jones … he had a big accident at Wanganui.”

 

But there was no stopping Stroud at the Brother-sponsored Taupo event on Sunday.

 

“The first race was really exciting. New Plymouth’s Hayden Fitzgerald passed me and I spent the rest of the race trying to get back past him. We were side-by-side on the last lap but I got my wheel in front. It was pretty close.

 

“I led the second race from start to finish and I won the feature race comfortably too, although Gareth Jones was only a couple of seconds back.

 

“We tried three different valve settings for the suspension and I think we have the perfect set-up now. I’m better prepared now than I was at this time last season.”

 

And there’s another warning bell sounding for his rivals too.

 

"I was using exactly the same engine through this series that I used last year and it will make a bit of a horsepower difference when I get the new engine in a few days, so I think my speed will increase.”

 

Just a few weeks after being crowned the 2008 New Zealand Road-rider of the Year at a black tie function in Auckland, the 40-year-old Stroud has shown he may well be in line to win that title again after his scintillating display in the Tri-Series.

 

“Both Gareth and Craig (Shirriffs, of Feilding) were pushing pretty hard in the Tri-Series but I feel I’m going pretty good too.”

 

Stroud is poised now to chase glory on the purpose-built Kiwi racing circuits with the New Zealand Road-race Championship season set to begin in less than a fortnight.

 

The series kicks off at Teretonga, near Invercargill, on January 11, before heading to Levels (Timaru) on January 18, followed by Ruapuna (Christchurch) on January 25, Manfeild (Feilding) on February 15 and, finally, Pukekohe, on March 8.

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