Day 18

Indianapolis, IN

Indianapolis Speedway

Saturday was a busy day. I attended the Moto GP practices and qualifying. I stayed at the Brickyard to listen to James Toseland's band "Crash before leaving to attend the Grand Nationals... flat track racing at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.

I didn't take pictures of the Moto GP qualifying, but I do have some videos here.

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Stephanie and Scott, bike fans from Indiana. I met them in our parking lot and talked to them each morning before attending the races.
Bill Patterson was putting finishing touches on a painting of Valentino Rossi. As I said in a previous comment, I LOVE the way he uses primary & secondary colors only!
This print is called "Mr. 100" and I bought one to add to my collection of Patterson prints.
Yesterday I'd met members of the "Taxi Squad". Today, I got to see them in action when James Toseland went down in corner 2.
There's James, getting his ride back to the pits.
There's his rather beat up Yamaha, being loaded on the truck...
... to get its ride back to the same area.
This is John. I met him at corner 2 while we both "spectated". John was a very interesting fellow from Indianapolis who works for a chemical company now. John used to race cars and has raced on the Indy Speedway. Nice. He attends all the different races at the Brickyard. He has the equivalent of "season tickets". Hi John!
I finally made it over to Ducati Island and found the most interesting bike at the event. Look at this oldie! In perfect shape, too!
I guess, like Yamaha, Ducati was into all sorts of other sidelines. Get a load of this old radio! I LOVE it!!
I went back to the BMW display and was glad because they were giving a presentation which explained some of the engineering behind the new S 1000 RR... e.g. why is one light shaped differently than the other? All about weight.
Why is one side of the fairing differently shaped than the other?
Answer: the air gets scooped into one side of the bike (previous photo) and cools engine systems with the exhaust on the other side of the bike. The bike also has a Dynamic Traction control which can be adjusted on the fly... I want one!!
As I waited in line to get my picture ON Valentino Rossi's 2008 Championship bike, I met Kim and Carl from Wisconsin Dells. They both race in Sportsman Days in Wisconsin. Nice people!
I hadn't gone to the Bridgestone display yet, so I went now. I LOVE this Beamer!!! Sleek!!!
And this Ferrari was awesome! I can't imagine driving a vehicle that close to ground level though!
Fiat (sponsor of the Rossi and Lourenzo Yamaha teams) had one of their vehicles parked in front of the Yamaha tent. I was a cute little thing. I wonder how much power it had? I didn't stick around to find out because James Tosland's group Crash was due to start their concert at the other end of the very long field momentarily.
And here they are... Crash! Toseland is the one in the middle singing. I wondered whether the concert would go on as scheduled. After all, that was a pretty nasty "CRASH" Toseland suffered earlier in the day (see above). But... the show went on and the music was excellent.

To catch a bit of video of this very "tight" group, click here.

An interesting note: James Toseland rides for Yamaha and ALL the instruments on stage (keyboard, guitars, amps, drum set) were all Yamaha. I guess it couldn't be any other way!

After leaving the "Crash" concert, I headed directly for the Indiana State Fairgrounds to see the Grand National Flattrack Racing.
The buildings reminded me of our Red River Exhibition Park.
On the other hand, the buildings were more extensive and all available free space was PACKED with motorcycles of all ages, makes and models.
At the races, I sat next to Connie and Rick. They were really nice people who gave me insight into a type of racing I'd never seen live before.

A highlight of the evening was seeing Kenny Roberts race a few laps around the track on the TZ750 he'd raced years before. When he came off the track, Valentino Rossi was there to "be in awe" of the racing style and the bike.

I have videos of the event available to view on on this page.

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