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MotoGP of USA 2007, Laguna Secca
Part 2. Finding the right spot...............Thursday, July 19th

5:00am Dave and I are both awake. Time to start packing and unjacking the trailer to move to our “General Camping” area at turns 9, 10 and 11.

We did good this year! Followed around to the “Corkscrew” area and told the SCRAMP guys we know what we are doing and where to Park. ;) “In an area without a number.” We get waved through and up the hill we go. We are looking to get the same spot as last year, at the very top of the Corkscrew parking, on the grass,  not designated as “reserved”.  As everyone in front of us pulled off on the flattest piece of ground as soon as possible, it made it easy for us. We were the only ones up there. J Exactly where we wanted to be.       

We had just got situated and jacked the trailer as straight as possible, when two guys from SCRAMP came up and asked what type of camping pass we had. And we explained it was General turns 9, 10 and 11, unimproved space. They looked at each other saying, “there is no numbers, they are on an unimproved space and in the turns 9, 10 and 11 area. OK guys you can stay!”  Perfect!

Soon after another small Motorhome pulled up and asked if they could park behind us. They were three guys from the East Coast, New Jersey, Maryland and New York. Alex, John and Alex.  Shortly after them another two guys (Mark and Joe) came up and squeezed by and set up just in front of us. Now we have our own little community   atop the “Corkscrew View” J

I try to log on the Internet again as we are up much higher and in a clear spot. Well………it is even slower here! I manage to answer a couple of emails, but figure I’ll try again later.

We decide it’s time to head down to the Food court and get the morning coffee at our favorite Brazilian food stand. We get there only to be informed “Sorry! No coffee today, but I will have it tomorrow”. That does me no good now! L 

We went all over looking for coffee and finally the permanent food stand had opened and was serving coffee. J All is well in Mac’s world again! ;)

Off to the Pits to see what’s going on.

As we near the MotoGP pits, we find a big Motorhome is following us, which I did not think should be there. Oh well! As we turn to see where they are trying to go, I realize it is Marco Melandri sitting in the passenger seat up front.  Apparently this year all the riders have big Motorhome's and are parked at the pits.

We wonder around the front of the Motorhome's into the Pits only to find it is the same situation as last year, they are still just opening boxes and beginning the set up of the garage spaces.  There are packing boxes all down the back of the pits.

We decide to walk around the front (Hot side) of the pits, but only one team has a garage door open, Yamaha.  They have Valentino’s bikes partially built, and a mechanic is fitting the cameras to the back of seats. I figure a good time for a few pictures. As I pull the Camera up to take the first picture of the side of one of the “unfaired” bikes, a mechanic walks over and stands in front of it and waves his hand…………so I take his picture. ;) He says “Thank you!” and stays there. ;) I take a couple of others when he moves away, but nothing special. 

So we decide to go back around to the backside of the pits again. Chris Vermeulen is in civvies having his picture taken by some fans; Dani Pedrosa is in the Repsol tent chatting with engineers. We also see Casey Stoner in the Ducati tent looking at computers, obviously going over things with the engineers. Kurtis Roberts drives by on a scooter. Carlos Checa is stopped by some autograph hunters on the way to his garage.

Then we take a walk through the AMA paddock area, where Dave spots a Barry Sheen replica Yamaha at the “Celtic” racing team area …… Check out the pictures.

At the “Rockwall” racing team area Dave finds a Honda NSR500cc 2 stroke . We are still trying to decide what year it was from. Note the nice Carbon discs. Even the guys at Rockwell didn’t know for sure. But Dave is all over it with the camera. Check out all these pictures! ;)

I’m getting hungry so it’s back to the Brazilian food stand to eat. I snap a picture of the Corona bike on the way (just because I like the paint scheme) J

Spicy Brazilian Sausage in a bun with salsa, very good, but $8.00. I want to sit and eat it, so we move back into the paddock area of the food court, because that seems to be the only place to sit.

As I’m sitting stuffing my face with the hot dog, and Dave is off on a break, along comes Collin Edwards with his wife and 2 children.  So being the social person I am I shout out…..”Collin!”  He looks over, “Good luck this weekend!”  He has obviously spent too much time in England lately because he replied “Thanks Mate!” I also realize I have my Yamaha visor on from last years US MotoGP. J Good Karma!

When Dave returns, we wonder around some more, and return to the Souvenir store, to get ticket holders and a program, plus visit the beautiful girl working the counter………… Executive decision made, we have to visit it every day now. ;)

There is not much set up to see at all today! I find it very disappointing. We cross over the bridge between turns 4 and 5, as we get to the other side and look back at the track, we see Dani Pedrosa with possibly an engineer going around on a scooter. It is just a few more yards of walking when I decide I’m going back to the trailer and relax.  Dave decides he is going to go to the pits one more time.

I get half way up the hill to the corkscrew and discover I’ve lost my lens cap from my camera, Oh well! I’m not going back to look for it, I ache too much.

I arrive back at the trailer, where one of our neighbors (Mark) brings over two Cold Modelo especial’s NICE!

Dave returns with a disgusted look on his face; saying “….if you were pissed off at SCRAMP already this year, you’ll REALLY be pissed off now! The paddock passes we have are no good for the MotoGP pits this year. I got turned away!”

Bummed out, I try logging on the Internet again……………even worse! I think I managed 4 emails in 2 hours! I cannot do this from here anymore. I'll return the Broadband card when I get home.

After a short nap and a read, we decide it’s time to go into town and eat at the Happy Dragon, get a couple of things at Safeway’s and see about filling one of the Propane tanks, as we think it might be empty, causing the problem with the fridge.

We park in the Safeway’s parking lot and walk across the street to the Happy Dragon. As we walk in the door, we see the beautiful Kim, (She has lost a little weight this year.) behind the counter; she greets us saying “Your back! I remember you from last year.” It’s nice to be recognized. ;)

I have my Tsingtao and Dave has Ice tea, while waiting for the food.

After dinner we go back over to Safeway’s for the supplies we forgot yesterday, and then to find some propane.  We find a gas station nearby selling propane and I tell the guy “I don’t know how much is in the tank. There is some, but I want to make sure it’s full.”  He is new apparently. He hooks up the gas and starts to fill it……….immediately gas comes out the overflow. Another guy comes over to ask how much went in. When he sees it’s way less than a gallon he lifts the cylinder saying “I should have done this, you can tell it’s full just by lifting it.” He then looks at me and says there is a minimum charge for propane. I ask what it is and he says “You don’t want to know man! Just give me $5.00. I’ll work it out later.” I look back at the list above the pump; minimum charge $15.00!

Full, and a little tired we drive back to the track. We kick back and try to watch a DVD on the laptop, but the volume sucks! Need external speakers.



 To Part 3......  Quick links  Part 1Part 4Part 5 Race Day