The battle for the 2015 Street Series will come to a head at Willowbank Raceway this Saturday 5 September, with more than 100 local drag racing heroes set to fight to secure their ticket to the finals by placing amongst the ‘top eight’ in the Street Sedan, Street Bike or Powder Puff (ladies only) points standings.
After taking victory in the last round, forty-five year old Paul de Roo is currently tied for the lead in the Street Bike category, despite missing the first round of the season.
Unusually, the Program Manager has competed on no less than three different bikes so far in this year’s Series, with another new steed set to be debuted this weekend.
“I am surprised to be doing so well this year, I have raced three different bikes throughout the season and it takes time to get used to each of them,” said the racer who has been involved in drag racing since 1988.
“I will be racing yet another bike this weekend – one that I have not raced before, having just taken delivery of a new 2014 MT-O9 that I will use just for drag racing.”
With plenty of family commitments, this season was to be the first ‘full’ Street Series campaign for the father of six. Unfortunately, he would miss the first round, however that hasn’t hindered his championship aspirations.
“Unfortunately on the morning of the first round this year my mother passed away following a battle with cancer, so I missed that event,” said de Roo, who was the runner-up in the Queensland Drag Racing Championship Modified Bike category in 2014 and took out victory in the recent All Bike Day.
“Missing that event saw me on the bottom of the leader board heading to round two, but with some really good results throughout the series I have been able to come up to be level with first place heading into this weekend’s last series round ahead of the finals.
“The last round in particular was a real highlight, as we won the event with a bike that was playing up on us – it didn’t want to idle and was very sketchy leaving the start line, so I was super surprised that I was able to be consistent on it and take out the event.
“As far as what may happen from here – the format of racing is really great in that anyone in the top eight come finals day can win the series, so that means that anything can happen on the day, and it usually does!
“For me I will just be looking to get a solid bag of points this weekend and finish the regular series rounds on a high ahead of the final, while putting a priority on settling in with the new bike – getting used to how it delivers power, and achieving some consistent clutch control.
“The new bike has only 640 kilometres on its clock, it is virtually brand new, so I will have to tread carefully across its first few passes – I expect it may be quite hard to get off the line due to the short wheel base and a ‘snatchy’ throttle.
“At the end of the day, consistency is what I strive for whenever I head out onto the track, and this weekend will be no different,” said de Roo, “As we head to this weekend, I have to thank Tyres for Bikes and of course my lovely wife Jacqui for all their support, as well as all the other bike racers – we have a good competitive relationship and they are all a great bunch of guys!”
De Roo will be joined on-track by not only his fellow Street Bike competitors, but also racers for the Quick Eliminator, Hot Street Eliminator, Street Eliminator and Powder Puff brackets. Gates on Saturday will open at 4.00pm, with time trials from 4.30pm to 6.30pm, with racing from 7.00pm. Competitor entry is just $45 for both the racer and one other adult. Spectator entry is available at the gate for just $20.00 for adults and $18.00 for students with ID. Children aged 13 years and under gain free admission. For more information, visit www.willowbankraceway.com.au