News 10 May 2016

New Zealand in line to host ASBK round during 2018

Trans-Tasman collaboration on the radar as regulations align.

Image: Keith Muir.

Image: Keith Muir.

The Yamaha Motor Finance Australian Superbike Championship (ASBK) presented by Motul Pirelli could be travelling to New Zealand for a Trans-Tasman round in 2018, a statement posted on the official series website has revealed.

ASBK organisers have published an announcement from Motorcycling NZ (MNZ) road race commissioner Greg Percival on, confirming that discussions are in place to host an ASBK round in NZ, as well as a New Zealand Superbike (NZSBK) round in Australia.

The event wouldn’t take place until 2018 when NZSBK is set adopt similar premier class regulations to the ASBK, however next year New Zealand’s Superstock 1000 category will be the same specification as ASBK Superbikes.

“The Superstock 1000 class was reintroduced as a support class for the 2016 NZSBK championship,” stated Percival. “This was to gauge interest given the diminishing numbers at the 2015 NZSBK championship in the Superbike class and the calls from riders to reduce the cost to build a NZ Superbike.

“Coincidentally, Motorcycling Australia have introduced a much closer to OEM engine specifications for their Superbike and have expressed interest in closer Trans-Tasman competition. With this in mind, for 2017 our intent is to leave NZ Superbike regulations unchanged for another year and to align Superstock 1000 with that of Australian Superbike.

“Then in 2018 align our Superbike specification with that of the Australians and work toward holding a round of ASBK in NZ and a round of NZSBK in Australia. In 2017 NZ Superstock 1000 bikes would be eligible for Australian Superbikes and vice-versa if riders want to come to NZ for pre-2018 testing and set-up.

“The Trans-Tasman competition should generate media and spectator interest in both countries and may be combined with FIM Oceania competition. Motorcycling NZ and Motorcycling Australia are in discussions and will release further media statements as they eventuate.”

Motorcycling Australia (MA) CEO Peter Doyle outlined the NZ discussions this afternoon, which are taking place as part of an increased influence from the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM) in a bid to further establish relations between MA and MNZ as the sole FIM Oceania continental union affiliates.

“An alignment of rules would mean that we would be able to go back and forth between the two countries, both as competitors and it also opens the possibility of having a Trans-Tasman challenge, Oceania-type championship – we could go there or they could come here,” Doyle told

“We could have an ASBK round over there, which doesn’t necessarily mean all classes, but it could happen. Also, they could send a crew out here. Absolutely, it’s a realistic option, and everybody’s been supportive of it.”

Last year’s final round of the 2015 ASBK series at Phillip Island featured a minor Oceania sub-championship between Australia and New Zealand entrants Daniel Falzon and Ryan Hampton, albeit with little impact as single-rider ‘teams’ represented their nations.

Additionally, the high-profile Asia Road Racing Championship (ARRC) – already boasting a number of quality Australian racers across multiple classes – is due to step its premier category up from Supersport to Superbike machinery in 2018, with MA and the ARRC organisers understood to be in regular correspondence. Further collaboration could take place between the pair in the future.