Saturday, December 01, 2007

Bright, sun-shiny day

On the weekend of Nov 24-25 I drove to Sydney, raced at Oran Park, then drove home. You can read about that here . Not satisfied with completely over-doing it for an entire month, I thought I'd squeeze in another activity, at least this time, for kid(s). Well, in this case, Sammy at least. The plan was to get up early-ish, drive to Queenscliff, take the leisurely ferry-ride to Sorrento, then drive calmly to Phillip Island for the V8 Stuporcars, since Sammy has become as tragically addicted to car racing as I was when around 12. Sad, that.

Seriously, I actually do think it's sad. The only reason I haven't taken him to a race yet is because I'm kinda over standing on the side of a hill with yobbos who actually think the cars racing are the same as the car they drove to the track .

But no, this time would be different. After all, the previous weekend my van to Sydney contained not only my race kart, but one belonging to the team manager for established V8 Supercar driver Jason Bright. Hence, he owed me a favour. So we would get the full garage tour etc.

How cool. When I was a little motorsport-junkie-tacker, the first touring car race I saw was as a guest of our local Holden Dealer. Things were a little more casual then but still, to be shown through Brocky's car and meet the man himself was pretty special. So, I suppose I have always tried to avoid joining the masses when attending these events. Why force the same unrealistic standard on my own boy? Because I can. Hehehee.

UP until recently all Sam had eyes for was "Craig Lowndes!!" He has now been converted to "Jason Bright!!" (Unfortunately Craig Lowndes is up the right end of the grid. Jason is up the other end).

HOw quickly the smile faded from this girl's face when she realised Triple Eight Racing's Jamie Whincup was just rushing towards his race car

So anyhoo, that was the plan. What really happened was that we missed the first ferry, took an ill-fated shortcut through the Mornington Peninsula which ended up in a road closure, got stuck through Saturday am shopping traffic, then drove anything but calmly to Phillip Island in a trip that took, all up, four and a half hours.

But it was all worth it with a slightly shy but enthused Sammy having the meet-and-greet with Brighty, sit in the car, photos, and some cool (free) team merchandise which yes, ahem, included some for daddy as well.

I was also told some (confidential) interesting stats on the money thrown around to run a V8 Soupedupcar team and sponsorship brokering. Britek's level 2 (Fujitsu-series) V8 Car is currently looking for a driver. They can't really advertise on because unlike most jobs, this one costs you a cool $350,000 for the year, and you still have to find your own accommodation and travel. The level one team costs around $7m to run per year. At the moment, they have a total of around $5m in sponsorship.

That's just a sniff. On the way home, Sam rather predictably said "I wanna be a V8 Supercar driver!!". I'm currently in the process of encouraging him toward something more economical, like an astronaut or airline pilot. More piccys soon, so if you happened upon this posting before I told you about it, go away and come back later. (Please).

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