Team Suzuki Press Office – January 23. Suzuki’s Robbie Budgen and John Ross extended their leads in the Superbike and Supersport classes at the Teretonga New Zealand Superbike Championship round on Sunday.
Australian, and defending champion Bugden (Triple R Suzuki GSX-R1000), convincingly won both races in the Superbike class to stretch his advantage from 10 to 24 points clear of his nearest rival Craig Shirriffs (Suzuki New Zealand GSX-R1000) as the series passed the halfway stage.
Said Budgen (pictured): “It was actually a tough day today. It was pretty tricky because the wind was up and I didn’t know how hard I could push things. As soon as the front wheel came up on the main straight, the wind would catch the bike and blow it a metre or so either way. I had to ride with something in reserve and Craig Shirriffs and Sloan Frost were pushing me pretty hard.”
In the six Superbike races so far, Bugden has won five of them; his only set-back coming when Shirriffs snatched away the win in the second race at round two near Timaru the previous weekend.
In the fiercely-contested 600cc Supersport class, Repsol Suzuki’s Ross also managed to stretch his advantage at the top of the standings. GSX-R6000-mounted Ross started the weekend just five points in front of his nearest challengers for the title, but he ended the day a whopping 30 points clear at the top ahead of the new No.2 rider, Jaden Hassan.
Ross (31) scored back-to-back wins at Teretonga to place himself in a commanding position for the championship title with just the two North Island rounds remaining.