News 30 Apr 2024

How Stop and Seal guest ride has reinvigorated Sissis

South Australian restores confidence with promising QR ASBK showing.

Following a persistent run with bike issues since last year, Arthur Sissis admits he was ‘finished’ with the 2024 Mi-bike Australian Superbike Championship (ASBK) after Sydney’s night race last month. That was until a surprise call-up from Stop and Seal Racing saw him back on the grid at Queensland Raceway on the weekend, and it just may have been the lifeline his career needed.

The South Australian has largely been one of the highest-ranked independent riders since returning to Australia and entering ASBK in 2018, where he transitioned to Yamaha machinery in 2021 under the Unitech Racing guise through to round two at Sydney Motorsport Park this year.

Sissis, who has a Moto3 World Championship podium to his name, initially experienced technical issues with his R1 midway through 2023 as he overcame a wrist injury,  which carried through to this season and has notably resulted in the number 61 struggling to be as competitive as he once was.

Image: Foremost Media.

“I’ve been having a few problems with my other bike since halfway through last year,” Sissis explained to “I was finishing 30 seconds from the lead, when I’ve always finished closer to the front really. I just wasn’t enjoying it, and I thought I’d rather stay home than waste people’s time and money.

“Obviously the last few rounds and finishing so far back, even I thought ‘I’m finished’. That’s why I thought there was no point wasting any more time doing it.”

It was a short-lived exit for the 28-year-old, with Stop and Seal Racing team owner Robbie Bolger offering him a lifeline of sorts with a guest appearance aboard their Yamaha R1 for Queensland Raceway’s third round.

The outfit has taken ASBK by storm this year, fielding a five-rider squad in the Supersport category, including two-time champion Tom Toparis who was initially slated to pilot their Superbike entry this year.

Image: Foremost Media.

The call-up was essentially one more opportunity for Sissis to see if he still had what it takes to be competitive with Australia’s best aboard a familiar, yet alternative package.

“It was my first time riding the bike this weekend, I was just learning on Friday and Saturday, and even today,” he continued. “So three days on the bike, a brand new bike, brand new team.

“Learning a new bike – I know it’s a Yamaha and I was on a Yamaha before, but it was completely different suspension, electronics – everything was completely different, so I had to relearn a bike really.”

Sissis seemingly transitioned to the Stop and Seal prepared machine, and it was evident as we saw glimpses of his former self throughout the weekend, lodging a 9-5 scorecard for seventh overall, while more importantly, finding himself in the mix with the front group of riders during race two.

Image: Foremost Media.

It’s a glimmer of hope for the former international, with the competitive performance not only restoring his confidence, but also his drive to continue racing in ASBK.

“I think we exceeded – to do similar times that the front guys were doing with only three days on the bike, I think it was pretty good.

“I think I did pretty good – the last race I finished fifth, and not far from the lead, so I’m happy. I know I can ride a motorbike still – I proved it in the last race – so I think it’s a big confidence boost.”

Sissis’ ride with Stop and Seal Racing was just a one-off appearance for Queensland Raceway, and it’s unclear if the partnership will continue throughout the year. Although, when questioned if we’ll see him on the grid at Morgan Park in just under three months’ time, Sissis responded: ‘I hope so’.