Bikes get a V8 boost
It’s a super double date, writes CRAIG DUFF
THE national superbikes are taking a step down to step up. Promoter Yarrive Konsky is wearing the loss of gate revenue to run alongside the V8 Supercars at Phillip Island in September.
The reason is simple: exposure. Anyone who has been to a superbike round lately knows the quality of the racing. Trouble is, not enough people are attending.
‘‘We need to improve the superbikes’ profile and this is part of building that image,’’ Konsky says.
‘‘The V8 tie-in gets us in front of a good crowd and puts us in front of the corporate sponsors and a big television audience.’’
The Sandown V8 crowd lapped up a display ride by defending superbike champion Glenn Allerton and rival Josh Waters last weekend and Konsky is confident public acceptance will grow as more people realise how much talent the class holds.
‘‘The V8s have been fantastic — really receptive,’’ Konsky says. ‘‘They understand that we bring great racing and professional teams.
‘‘The next step for us now is to improve free-to-air coverage and show as many people as possible just how good this racing is.’’
Konsky has a three-year plan to push the series to the top of Australian motorsport and his reputation as a terrier who won’t quit makes him the right man at the right time.
He’ll need all of that tenacity to reinvigorate the series and tap in to the corporate sponsorship that will assure the series’ viability.
‘‘The organisation of it is doing my head in, but the racing is too good not to keep going,’’ he says.
‘‘The frustrating part is I know how good the product is, I just need to get it out there.’’
The cause isn’t helped by issues such as having to change the venue and date for this season’s final round of the superbikes.
‘‘Because of circumstances beyond IEG and MA’s control, both the date and venue for the final round needed to change,’’ Konsky says.
‘‘We looked at all our options and we are thrilled the Australian Superbike Championship finale will now be showcased at Phillip Island, which is one of the best racetracks in the world.’’
The next round of the superbikes is at Eastern Creek this weekend.
It’s been a Honda v Suzuki battle this year, with Motologic’s Allerton leading the series from Waters and their respective teammates Wayne Maxwell and Shawn Giles third and fourth.
Super Sandown: Suzuki racer Josh Waters was part of a display ride for the V8 Supercars crowd at Sandown.