After dominating Wanganui's Cemetery Circuit but still finishing bridesmaid to cagey local Richard Dibben, Tauranga's Supermoto rider Duncan Hart has vowed to be back.
The Yamaha competitor showed he was sharpest in adapting to the wild weather in Wanganui, qualifying fastest and then taking his modified Bayride Motorcycles YZ450F to the front in both supermoto races.
And he never looked back from there, scoring back-to-back wins.
But after an impressive Round 1 in the series Dibben had a clear eye on the points table and rode smart to claim the overall title by just two points.
Both men had turned their class into a two-horse race as they finished 20 points clear of the third-ranked rider last season's Tri-Series supermoto champion and fellow Yamaha rider Toby Summers.
Hart, 37, proved as conditions went from sticky and hot to slippery and wet within just a few hours on Boxing Day that he is a street fighter.
"I'll definitely be doing the Tri-Series again next year and I'll be aiming for the No1 spot.
"My goal was to achieve a top-three finish and I've finished No2, so that's very good indeed."
Of the six races in the series - two at each round - Hart won three and came close to a fourth.
"I won both [at Wanganui] and also won a race at Manfeild.
"I came close at the series opener at Hampton Downs when I was leading right up until about 30 metres from the finish.
"But two riders drafted past me on the line."
Hart has full respect for Dibben and the other racers on the track.
"The racing has been very close indeed and there have always been five or six riders who could win at any time.
"It's pretty exciting because there are always a lot of lead swaps in the races."
While he has an eye on next November and December already, first for Hart is the traditional Battle of the Streets meeting at Paeroa in February where he hopes to continue his form.