Another old riding buddy Jeff Wallace
(slocalspode) has a standing reservation at Chapparal, right on the track grounds. They’ve been going every year for more than 20 years now. They have two sites side by side, right across from the showers and bathrooms. We can stuff about 20 people into these two sites. It’s pretty cool, with satellite tv, lighting, campers, firepit, bbq, coolers, you name it. I just had to ride in with a change of clothes and enjoy the races.
Ol' Slocalspode is my biggest fan. He has gotten me into more types of riding than anyone else I've ever met. I found him on a vintage bike forum and we've been riding ever since. He's got more than 20 motorcycles in his garage. In fact, you couldn't stuff another one in there. He has gotten me into observed trials, street riding, and turned me onto ADVrider.com so many years ago. What a terrific host for the races. He brings his truck and camper, a couple'a bikes, and tons of beer and grub.
Joe, another of our friendly hosts, brought family all the way from Denver:
Yes, we have CCTV and a satelite dish for keep up on what's going on down at the track.
We pitch our tents under the oak trees out behind the campsite. It was pretty full this year. You have to find a level tent spot carved out of the hillside.
During the midnight hours the fog rolls in so thick from Monterey Bay that it condenses on the oak trees and rains down under them. So glad to have a waterproof tent. It wasn’t cold but it was pretty damp out overnight.
Saturday morning the fog from Monterey Bay hung low over the track.
We hiked up to the corkscrew while it was cool.
Here's my dear old friend Slocalspode.
At the top of the access road of the campground they setup their ez-up and chairs with a great view of the track and infield. We can sit up there and drink beer, watch the races.
The cool thing about this event is they have combined AMA World SuperBike along with MotoGP so there’s never a dull moment. Qualifying and racing all day long for three days. It’s a go-to event for sportbikes and motorcycle enthusiasts, and they just love to ride there. The bike parking lot was absolutely packed. And if you rode in on a Ducati or a Yamaha, you got a special area to park your bike.
There are always some cool bikes to see. Here's the BRAMMO electric racer paddock:
We sit under our EZ up, drink beer, and watch the races.
And the vendor area in the infield always has some cool stuff to see.
There are lots of groups of 'umbrella girls' from all kinds of race teams, walking though the paddock area, photo-ops for the desperate fans.
The last race on Sunday is late afternoon and then there’s a mass exodus. We always take Monday off so we can drink beer all day and relax, have a nice dinner, and then head out fresh Monday morning.
Early Monday it was fun to pack up the bike and head out after a nice weekend at the track. It was pretty foggy, dew streaming off the face screen as I hit the hiway toward King City
. It warmed up nicely as I made my way down the 101.
I hit Denny’s at King City for breakfast
, so just blew by Paso. As I headed over the hills toward Buttonwillow I had wicked it up pretty good. Passed a ton of traffic and then it was clear sailing. A little too clear I guess, getting the speeds up and sure enough, a CHIP coming the other way behind a string of cars. I thought I saw him pull a U-ey way back there and then there was a 45mph construction zone so I slowed down. No way, I had been HAD! 87 in a 65, ouch. Same deal though, old gray hair guy on a new bike, so he wrote a ticket for 74 so I could do traffic school. I guess it's a good thing he didn't come along when I was closer to a hundred.
He was just chatting away, telling be about a Lambo he had stopped doing a hundred, and there was no lienholder on the reg. The guy was complaining about the hotels doubling the rates in Monterey
for the event. Oh well, takes all kinds huh? So I stripped off my layers, put my vented jacket back on and headed on down the road.
The rest of the trip was pretty uneventful. Home by 2:30 with another fun ride done. About 800 miles this weekend on the new Tiger 800. Whoohoo!