August 23, 2006

Next Year's Dreams are here . . . . . the 800's!

Brno was fantastic! Beautiful race, and Monday was set to be a day of testing for almost all the MotoGP teams. Many people were testing tires, riders, and also new engine parts. Two factories decided it was time to start testing with next year's dream machines.

After the stress of the first week of racing after the break behind me, I went into Autodromo Brno much more relaxed on Monday, passing through some small villages along the way and headed to the forest where the circuit is located.

It was a gorgeous day, and not at all rainy like the forecasters had predicted. The forest surrounding the track is similar to Sachsenring - dark, mysterious, and full of life. I know it sounds corny, but it was totally a "One ring to rule them all" kind of spot - once you got off the main inroads to the track. I took some video, maybe I'll throw it up one day.

It was quiet in the paddock, as most of the 125cc and 250cc teams had packed up and left. A handful of us made our way through the trucks and had some impressive food at the circuit restaurant. One of my team members re-established contact with a girl he had met there three years ago. She was still working at the restaurant, he was still working in racing. If you look carefully, you'll see someone cool on pit wall.
I was in box 14 for the week, and part of 15. Factory Ducati was in 16, and part of 15, too.

I took a moment to walk around, check out a couple things, and saw this sitting in a garage, waiting. It is truly something special for me to see the birth of a new machine. I know I wasn't involved in any way at the factory, but I can say that I saw it before a lot of people, before she was even wearing her colors. Score! For being out of the mall, for being away from the television, for being where I need to be - for now.

Heya Bernie! This was mid/late afternoon, and the bike hadn't gone out yet. I was thinking it might not happen, because it was getting colder, but as other websites have shown, she definitely got ridden.

Just hanging out at the track - and then I saw someone interesting checking out the Ducati pits.

"Know where I can get some good Italian food around here?"

It's magnificent. There's really nothing more to say, except that "This is the future". I can't wait. Exceedingly high RPM ceiling, F1-like sound, and all in that unmistakable Ducati Red. I managed to see a lot of the bike up close, and I'm so happy and excited about next season. It's going to be an incredible year, and I hope everyone is on the same page when it's game time. Better start planning your trips and tickets now!

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