Saturday, October 20, 2007

Pies! The Australian GP and Wheeler in the Bush!

MMM, steak and kidney...Well, it's taken me a few days more than usual to overcome jet lag. Typically it's just a day back home, some sleep re-adjustment and life is back to normal. I think it's more to do with having a few days to acclimate "down under" then all is normal. However, on this trip, I didn't get my couple of days R&R "on the Island". I was fortunate enough to be contacted by Kawasaki US/AUS and was offered the chance to do a shoot in the Australian Bush.

There would be 8 riders, including Attack Kawasaki rider Steve Rapp, the ever wonderful Greg White, Matthew Miles from Cycyleworld, Dirt Action magazine editor Shannon Warner and journalist Sam Maclachlan, oh and stuntman Tom "I only know how to ride on the back wheel" McComas. From Kawasaki off road racing team Australia, there would be race team manager Brett Whale and off road race team crew chief and my chase car driver Charlie Costanzo, all of us being expertly guided by Matthew Phillpott and bringing up the rear and making sure no one got lost or left behind, the sweep rider Mark Ryan. Needless to say, the almost two days we spent following their exploits through dusty roads in the bush were filled with fun, some danger (Matthew vs tree) and some minor technical issues (Bretts' KLX450R losing oil) it was a good adventure with some good sights to be seen along the way.

Dirt Action riders Shannon Warner and Sam Maclachlan doing their synchronised wheelie-ing..Thursday night, I was fortunate enough to miss the bad weather, catch an earlier flight to Melbourne where I was met by good friend Ken Lyons. A nice steady 2 hour drive to our house on Phillip Island and it was off to bed. Where, in a few hours I'd be working the track covering Casey Stoner's homecoming in the GMC Australian Grand Prix.Three wet, windy, wet windy, wet windy, sunny days later, Casey Stoner won the race. Then on Monday it was a little rest, a lightning tour of the Island, some dinner and then off to bed to be ready for the trip home the following morning. 20+ hours later we roll into our parking space in Capitola and I'm home.

Phew. I'll add a little more on the adventure as time allows and will let you all know when my site is updated. I'm off to Spain next weekend for the last round of the MotoGP World Championship so stay tuned!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Return to Laguna Seca - The Final Round!

I know, this was all done and dusted a couple of weeks ago, but I have finally found a little time to sit down and write about the weekend. Just before I head off to Australia to cover the Australian MotoGP at Phillip Island.It was a good weekend. Only two days of racing vs your typical three because one of the AMA Superbike races was run during the USGP back in July. There were two Championship titles on the line, AMA Superbike (between Mat Mladin and Ben Spies) and AMA Supersport (which was down to three possible winners, Josh Hayes, Roger Hayden and Jamie Hacking).

Sadly for Josh Hayes, he had a bit of a rough weekend. Broke both of his feet and then to put the capper on his chances at the Supersport title, had another nasty off which left him concussed and out of the race. Fortunately he is okay and is recovering well back home in Gulfport, MI. Roger would eventually finish the Supersport race and would pick up the Supersport title. AMA Superbike was a little more gripping, insofar as it looked like Mat Mladin was going to run away with it. It wasn't to be. Ben Spies was either sandbagging or was simply biding his time, but he made a cool pass in the corkscrew and simply took the race to the finish and to his second AMA Championship. Once again, that's the AMA racing season done until Daytona in March 2008. That said, MotoGP still has two races to go, Phillip Island and Valencia. Both of which I will be covering. Stay tuned for updates!

One more thing. The 2007 AutoMotoPhoto Review is just about done. Want one? Send me an email.

Get well Morgan.

TTFN for now.