9 July 2007


Me, here in Toronto and my motor sport friends, racers, riders, instructors, manufacturers, press officers, all enjoying the 9th MotoGP this year, TT Circuit ASSEN—just over one week ago.

It’s a different sphere in Assen than World Super Bike, for some reason the MotoGP attracts the real “die hard” fans. Only once did I have to watch the GP from outside the track parameters—quite a wildness. The years that followed, never again. I was either assisting wild card rider friends or interviewing riders like Katja Poensgen—I never had to see the “other side” as I liked to call it.

Now to be on this side of the ocean, when all but 90 minutes once put me in the Assen paddock. Here where I can’t yet manage to catch a live sending of the race--maddening! Living in a country where most have no idea of what top level motor sport is all about-such a contrast to what I've been use to. But I have many fascinating memories and friends who send me personal reports--I manage to ignite the feelings of being there, from afar.

Here’s a pic of Valle in his early HONDA days—my girlfriend got his attention and then snap! I had spoken with him earlier (PS--note the Ducati Corse jacket--I was part of the MCT Ducati team). The big screen in the background showing the many umbrellas—it rained often in Assen.
Ah the ambiance, the noise, the cheering, the mud in the parking lot, the amazing sounds of the GP bikes when they passed start/finish...OH–MY-GOD! Totally out of this world.

Usually I had a race of mine own shortly after the GP had been to town and all the lines and curb stones on the track had been repainted-- a vivid reminder of the talents that had been through the very same corners not so many days ago.

Rossi won again. He loves Assen its been quoted often. A track designed just for motorcycle racing. Then to see Chris Vermeulen on pole! I thought, this made sense, he knows Assen from his former years with Ten Kate. He spent much time and many laps on the circuit during non racing events etc. I recall one, I was working at the time with Ten Kate/Honda, where they hosted a family fun weekend. Chris along with Karl Muggeridge took passengers on the new CBR-RR’s pillion for a lap or two round the track. Chris showed off the 1000RR where top speeds went to 300kms.

And yes that’s Capirossi during a tour of Amsterdam’s diamond district (courtesy Press Assen/W.Lute). I'd say "I do" to his GPDucati any day in place of that big ole' diamond.

Rossi looked fantastic in his new colour scheme. (photo courtesy Press Assen/W.Lute) Did you notice the top of his helmet was an old 45 record and the back seems to have some kind of Elvis figure—rock and roll, yes he’s the king.

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