Thursday, June 11, 2009

Industry Speedway, June 11

The traffic last night was the usual tedious freeway commute where one encounters slowdowns, accidents, drivers talking on their cell phones unaware where the hell they are at. When pulling a trailer to the races I must remain to the right which is sometimes quicker than the car pool lane.

My trips started to the Grand when racing first started there several years ago but I stopped for several years because the traffic made it more of a pain in the ass and surfing or sailing was much more fun than sitting on the freeway. Last winter I returned to riding in the desert when living on my boat became too dark and cold and this led back to speedway. The constant starting and stopping on certain sections of the freeway is getting less as there appears that the recession and the creeping up with gas prices is keeping many cars home at the curb or driveway.

One of the nice things about the Grand is the ability to unload in the pits and that makes it much easier as I can't afford a mechanic (or much of anything anything else). Every Wednesday night there is a new track surface and the ground crew are constantly working the dirt before the races. Between turn 3 and 4 the dirt outside can get heavy and change in traction takes it toll on riders and the crash wall. Jimmy Fishback put a hole in the wall last night and after a long time on his back was able to limp off the track but his bike needed a stretcher. The wall need a repair crew. The majority of riders get to the track early to avoid the traffic and do needed repair and maintenance to their bikes.

On a clear day you can see downtown Los Angeles but yesterday was not a clear day and the night air was surely not summer like.

My camera work of the riders on the track will improve (I hope) as the lighting and the distance from the track where I shoot from behind the crash wall makes for a poor exposure and a much needed larger flash and more instruction. If I figure an easy way to caption the pictures here on this blog I will do that but these pictures in the pits include Jason Ramirez and Buck Blair, Austin Novratil and his proud dad. Mike Faria, whose hair is much longer than mine, unloading his borrow bike. The track pictures include Faria and the classic Buck Blair (39) lean and Charlie Venegas studying his chain.
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