Whanganui motorcycle ace Richie Dibben is ready to unleash his newly-acquired skills after the rockiest of starts to his Supersport 600 career.
The stars have yet to align for the two-time Suzuki Series supermoto champion after securing major sponsorship to take the step up to Supersport 600.
He has two brand new GSXR600 Suzuki machines under a sponsorship deal involving Whanganui businesman Mick Paul, former New Zealand superbike champion Brian Bernard and numerous other Whanganui supporters.
However, his debut was cut short during practice for round one of the Suzuki Series in Taupo last month when he crashed injuring his hand. Three weeks later, the 29-year-old finally made actual race time putting aside his injury to run both F2 races on the Cemetery Circuit on Boxing Day where he finished fifth and sixth respectively.
At the weekend he and the Barracks Bar/Total Span Steel Buildings crew again had no luck at the first round of five in the 2019 New Zealand Superbike Championships at Mike Pero Motorsport Park (Ruapuna) in Christchurch.
Racing was halted after a serious crash in race one of the Supersport class on Saturday and then on Sunday a major oil spill during a sidecar race immediately before Supersport was set to restart, again halted proceedings - this time for good, the meeting was canned.
Bernard, who is bike builder and mentor for Dibben's bid, said riders and officials inspected the track and it was deemed there was too much oil on the surface for racing to resume.
"We all managed to get some practice in and that was it for round one," Bernard said.
"As predicted Rangiora's Avalon Biddle (Kawasaki ZXR6) was quickest in practice and gained pole position securing one point in the championship. The rest of the field are tied in second on zero points after racing was canned. But Richie is right up there on laptimes and will be a real force once he finally gets a chance to unleash. It's been a real horror start to his 600 career, but once we get rolling they will know he's there," Bernard said.