Paeroa, world famous in New Zealand! usually its for its L&P Soft Drink but 21st Februray 2010 saw the hugely anticipated Battle of the Streets motorbike street race.
Taking place each year through the streets of Paeroa is just the most intense atmosphere i have experienced at any motorsport event.
The track is amazing for a street race with inclines, super quick straights with haipins and chicanes, naturally following a technical street route that works very well. Its very well thought out and although its a small circuit speeds of 280kph were reached by the top guns.
The tight technical track with some very quick sections, it makes for a challenging ride for riders patience and skill, having to ride sensibly through the tight stuff an just wait to get out onto the fast straights to pass with power or under brakes at the other end.
There was action from the first lap of the superstocks (600cc) supersports where Jared Love had a Tangle with Nick Cole on the entrance to the chicane, hearing two bikes hit the deck as hard as they did was a sound i will remember. While Cole managed to get back up and running, Love was walked into an Ambulance and im unsure if he continued for the rest of the event.
The 1ooocc Superbikes were something else, i can not believe how quick the guys are brushing up against the protective hay bails at 250+ kph on the high speed kink the front straight contains. The power and aggression that is displayed by the bike and rider is incredible steering the bike off the back wheel and constantly fighting to keep the front down. The skill and balls required for this intensity is truely mind blowing.
An accident late in the day resulting in a death of a modern sidecar pilot closed the circuit early, a real shame and loss to the sport, however most are there as spectators and dont realise that these riders are all putting their lives at risk, as will all motorsport, it has an aspect of danger that brings the excitement, and occasionally tradgedy.
On with the photos.