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Waiting for godot

Ottawa Safety Counsil

Mosport was all about the Rain and Surgery!

I won the race!. Well I got to the track before Pat did! I arrived at the registration building a few minutes after 9:00 a.m. on Thursday morning. After paying my money and filling out whatseemed like an endless number of forms I headed into the pit area to find a suitable spot for TEAMSHOULDERCHECK to set up for the weekend. I found a small patch of pavement surrounded by grass for setting up the tents. Once Pat arrived we got our stuff unloaded and headed up to tech. The tech inspector looked over my 12 year old Honda with admiring eyes(Or was that disgust!) as he placed all the required stickers onto my freshly painted bodywork.

We had actually made it through tech in time to get out for the first of 2 practices sessions for the day. It was good to get a few laps in and shke off some of the rust. As i came down the Andretti Straightaway for the 4th time my bike sputtered to a halt and I coasted back to the pits. DOH! I changed the fuel tank before leaving the house and never checked the level before I headed out onto the track... Pat returned to the pits at the end of the session and had a good Chuckle at my expense. The rest of the day was pretty uneventful and the afternoon session went off without any problems. Well other than me being slow!!

We headed into Peterborough to get some dinner and as we were drivng Pat checked his voicemail messages ............ Pat's wife Erinn had phoned, her Knee surgery is now scheduled for Friday at 7:00. After a quick rush to eat at Subway it was back to the track so that Pat could pack up and leave. Now I'm on my own for Friday but Dr. Walker promised Pat he'd look after me. LOL

Friday morning I woke around 5:30 to the sounds of Rain beating down on my tent. Stuck the ear plugs in and went back to sleep. When I crawled out of bed around 7:30 the ground was damp but the asphalt was dry. Today the practice sessions were split between odd and even numbered bikes. After the first session I was still slow, 26th of the odd numbered group! I figured I'd need to find about 2 seconds of time to make the final. The new tires on Saturday morning should do the trick. The afternoon session was more of the same although I actually went slower as the used tires I was practicing on were done... After a trip to the Pirelli tent for some new skins. I dropped by the BMW pit area to see what was up with Doc Walker and Pat from Open Road BMW offered me some freshly BBQ'd steak, corn on the cob and a cold beer... That sure beat the cheese sticks and pepperettes I was planning on eating.

After another nights sleep on the leaky air matress it was time to break in some new tires. The weather forcast was calling for rain in the afternoon so I was pretty sure Qualifying would be cancelled and this mornings practice session would be important. I headed out onto the track knowing I needed to pick up the pace and confident in the new tires. I did 10 laps but the clutch seemed to be slipping as I was accelerating down the backstraight and I couldn't even get a sniff of a draft off any of the newer bikes. It felt like I was going backwards as they blasted by me on thestraights. Back in the pits for a look at the time sheets showed that I went a bit faster but I was in the dreaded 39th place on the time sheets. That meant I would be out of luck if Qualifying was washed out. I imediately started my Sun dance routine...

Cathy and the kids had arrived while I was on the track so now I at least had some company for my Sun Dance. With nothing else to do but wait till the 4:00 qualifying session I went to pit lane for the start of the pro 600 race. Simon Blue, a top amateur rider from last year, was starting on the 8th row. As they rolled out onto the grid it bagan to sprinkle and then downpour, it was declared a wet race which meant the riders had 20 minutes to change tires or bikes. I hopped over the wall to help Simon and his crew. We got his wheels changed and on the tire warmers in about 5 minutes. With about a minute to go before the practice session we pullled the warmers off the bike but the front wheel wouldn't move. Panic ensued and we had to half carry Simons bike off the track to the outside wall and leave it there while the 10 minute practice session took place.

As soon as the practice was done we had about 2 minutes to fix the problem. We discovered that the brake calipers were hitting the rotors and stopping them from moving. Someone offered Simon another front wheel and we quickly began to change it. Unfortunately time ran out and the race started with out Simon. We finshed mounting the wheel as the bikes left the starting line. It turned out the the rotors on Simons Rain wheel were off of a ZX10 and were slightly larger then the ZX6 rotors. As the bikes came around on the 2nd lap the red flags came out as several riders had crashed on the slippery surface. This meant that Simon would get to start after all. After yet another Red flag Simon splashed his way to a 17th place finish.

The rest of the day was a wet mess and as I had supected Qualifying was cancelled and my weekend was done. We headed into Oshawa for some warm food and some new dry shoes and then it was back to the track for some sleep and race watching on Sunday.



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