March 01, 2006

Special Dinner? Chess Tournament?

My household held a special dinner the other night. One hand were both my roomates, Patricia and Daniel, and their respective mothers, #1 (visiting from Madrid)and #2 (visiting from Argentina). Also on hand were Shuhei and Hiro Aoyama, both 250cc GP pilots this year. Naturally, I kept the conversation steered toward the bike end of the spectrum, and it's going to be a tough season for these two!

Hiro's KTM 250 is still being refined, and although KTM gained a ton of knowledge and experience racing in the 125 category the last two years, the 250 is still an all new bike. Build quality is excellent. Power-delivery is very good, though different from the RSW Honda mill, and it plants itself differently. Mainly, the chassis is undergoing revisions at the moment. It's a little stiff, but there are new parts arriving all the time to rectify any niggles before the season really starts. Last year Hiro tried a new kind of food before he won the 250 GP race in Japan, courtesy of Patricia. It's now customary for him to have it before any big event, and I'm talking about Spanish Tortilla! We now refer to Hiro's luck on the bike as Tortilla Power, as in, did you have any Tortilla Power?!? Today, Hiro's Tortilla power consisted of keeping his bike in front of his teamate, Manuel Poggiali!

What's the big event I'm talking about? Well, this weekend is very, very special. Just south of Madrid one of the most prestigious Chess tournaments in the world will be taking place in Linares. Eight of the greatest players of the game will be on hand, including the current FIDE World Champion, competing for 380,000 Euros!! Millions will watch and games will be shown on the internet, LIVE. It's going to be a riot, and I can't wait! Read more about it here:

go for it

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