Saturday, 1 September 2012

From Russia with love...

I have to admit, I had been looking forward to the Russian round of the WSBK season as soon as I had seen it on the calendar. I couldn't wait to go and see what the country was like and most of all the brand new race track that I had heard so much about... before I knew it there was on the plane on my way there!

With just a few rounds to go before the end of the season I am making sure that I experience as much of the countries I visit as I can within the time I am there and luckily for me, the press conference was being held in Moscow city centre. The traffic was an absolute nightmare so it took a while to get there but once I was there it was great! Check out the 'Sightseeing with Leon Haslam' video I put together to have a look around Red Square.

Over in Moscow there was a shift in the championship with Melandri taking the championship lead by 18.5 points ahead of Biaggi. I was lucky enough to have my picture taken with his trophy from his 2nd place finish in race one:

I know I must say it in every single blog I write, but I really am having the best year of my life and will be disappointed when the season comes to an end. However I have made some great friends and I will have great memories from every round that I have been to. It's a great year for BMW and I am really pleased to have been part of it - they're currently leading both the riders championship and the manufacturers championship and that's credit to the team and riders.

Here are the other videos from Moscow Raceway:

Superpole Reaction 

Race Reaction

Race Action

Next stop : Nurbergring - never been before, so super excited! (As usual....) :-)

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

The Ron Haslam Race School

You know those things that you have always wanted to do? For some people it might be going to a festival or climbing a mountain...but for me it was to do the Ron Haslam race school and finally have the experience of going out on the track. Was it as good as I imagined? Nope, sounds a cliche, but it was better.

I had been crossing my fingers for days before for good weather on the day and my wishes had paid off, the sun was shining and there I was, driving to Silverstone ready to jump on a bike and go round the track.

If you take your own helmet, remember to clean your visor! Having my own bike I had taken my own leathers and helmet with me - clothing and equipment is available there though and you have the chance to try out an Arai lid - everyone else had gleaming helmets with clean visors....mine still had flies on it from the last time I had been out to Squires...shameful!

I met my lovely instructor, Darren Jones, who explained more about the itinerary of the day and introduced me to my bike for the day. There were three separate sessions out on track, each of which increased in speed and the bike got further and further over. I was taught about body positioning on the bike, opening the throttle A LOT, leaning your shoulder into corners and just how much fun bikes could be on the track.

At the end of your three sessions you are given your assessment filled out by your instructor, where you are given tips to improve even more, as well as a certificate to say you have completed the day successfully.

Before I knew it I was back in my car driving home. My whole body was buzzing with excitement and adrenaline from the day and I kept thinking about how much fun I had. I am lucky enough to go and watch the WSBK but doing the race school gave me a new respect for the guys out there. It's easy to forget when you watch the riders round track the amount of fitness required and how much the riders have to think about - I have even more respect for them now!

It sounds stupid to say but I honestly had the best time ever and I have already started thinking about when I can go again...

I have put together three tips though if you are planning on doing it:

  1. Listen - it is so important to listen to the instructors, whether you have done a track day before or not,  these guys know what they are talking about. 
  2. Remember the road is different - on the track there is nothing else to worry about, no bumps in the road, nothing coming the other way and no road regulations
  3. Make the most of it - It's easy to rush through a session and not make the most of every minute out on track but make sure you do as it's over before you know it.  

So, if you haven't do the Ron Haslam race school already....why the hell not?!

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

BMW Motorrad Days 2012

Well well well! I have just returned from a trip to BMW Motorrad Days in Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany and I have to say...I didn't want to come back! What an amazing event.

The weather was forecast to be thunderstorms so in my suitcase were a number of sweatshirts and waterproof jackets...I should know not to trust weather men because after a storm on the Thursday the rest of the weekend was glorious - I even got a bit of sunburn on the back of my neck!

I was lucky enough to travel from Munich to Garmisch on the back of a GS and had the opportunity to see the wonderful scenery on the trip - check out the picture above.

Anyway, enough of my ramblings - feel free to have a look at the videos I made while I was out there!

Day One and Two

Day Three and Four

If I were you I would book for next year...

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Sunshine, football and darn good racing...

From the title it would suggest that I had been on a stag weekend… I haven't! 

I have just returned from the seventh round of the World Superbikes over in Aragon and I can honestly say it has been one of the best weekends ever! 

The racing just seems to be getting better and better in the WSBK series with non stop action and every rider giving it his all until the final corner. Biaggi took the win in race one with Melandri and Checa filling 2nd and 3rd respectively. Race two saw Melandri take the top step for the third time this season for BMW Motorrad Motorsport with Laverty and Davies sharing the podium with him. 

It was great to see some new faces on the podium and it was a nail-biting fight for first place between Melandri and Laverty.

For those that are interested check out the videos I made whilst I was out there: 

So why the football reference? One of the highlights for me this weekend was strangely enough having the opportunity to watch the final of Euro 2012 in a tiny pub out in a Spanish village where we were the only english speakers…there was a great atmosphere- its certainly not something I will forget for a while. And strictly speaking, I don't even like football! 

Back to rainy England now, but it is good to be home - even if it is only for a few days before I fly out to Garmisch for the BMW Motorrad Days which I have heard are A LOT of fun! Will report when I get back :-) 

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Time flies when you're having fun...

Time flies when you're having fun...or flying round the World! And I am pleased to say I am doing both!

Since I last updated you I have been lucky enough to travel to Australia, America, Holland and Italy all in the name of work.

I have been working for RBP International now for just over a year and can honestly say I have had the best year of my life. There have been lots of changes - I have bought a house, got a dog, worked very VERY hard and flown on around 16 flights.

I am working on accounts that I only dreamed of and have met nearly a lot of my motorcycle racing idols and would count some of them as friends.

So what do I do?

I work alongside the BMW Motorrad Motorsport team and produce video content for their YouTube channel. I film, edit and present videos and have a whale of a time doing it. I used to dream of attending all the WSBK meets and wondered how people were lucky enough to watch the races from the garages, but now that's me!

I am very much looking forward to seeing where I am in a year from now and the adventures I get up to, but I would like to share them. I will therefore be updating this blog regularly to keep you all in the loop with what I am up to and will share links to the videos I have put together!