-- Intro - This is another regular column from a former mechanic that many
people in the Australian Superbike paddock would have come across before. Indy
Sam worked for Paul Free and Honda Racing Australia for a number of years before
taking the plunge and heading overseas to gain more experience in the big pond
of World Championship motorcycle racing. This year Indy is off the tools and providing
special tour packages at each MotoGP race event. To book/enquire about the MechMoto GP Tour, please contact
-- Indy Sam - 2013 # 7 - Get ‘Sh¡7’ Done
Did you know that it’s more common to get jetlag flying west to east than east to west ? Well it’s true ! After the 30 hour journey home from midday Tuesday until touch down late Wednesday night, it took me about two weeks to recover. Apparently getting in the sun helps but I wasn’t keen heading out in the Melbourne weather without my jacket. So herbal sleeping tablets was the next best thing.
When I finally made it back to the land of the living, I made the drive up to NSW to see good friend and mentor Mark Wills. I had collected a few presents that I wanted to give him. You see, Mark had given me the idea to bring one or two people inside MotoGP to experience a personal race weekend as if they were a part of the otherwise exclusive paddock. They come with me into pit boxes to meet a lot of different riders and teams while also having an opportunity to see a bit of the country-side. It is a unique and exclusive experience that nobody else is able to deliver.
So, I gave Mark the priceless poster which was signed in Philip Island by Lorenzo & Marquez when they won the championship along with a few other riders I liked. I had two posters signed like carbon copies and the other was given to my former boss Paul Free from Honda. I also had a few crashed fairings in my garage so I also gave Mark the duck tail off Thomas Luthi’s Moto2 Suter machine. He even put up Pol Esparago’s signed knee slider after winning the Phillip Island race up on his Mantle piece on proud display. So I gave him another one off Pol after he won the Catalunya GP this season. The gifts were truly appreciated and it was great to be able to share some of the special treasures.
That day Mark had a few friends over from Evo UK magazine who were testing some hugely powerful new Porsches, one had around 850 ponies and I was taken in the ‘low powered’ 670Hp Turbo S by Evo’s Canadian journalist. He knew how to drive and I was blown away by the cornering capabilities of the German machines! Anthony West was meant to meet up that day but missed his flight that morning from Cairns. Mark jokingly suggested he was too scared to show up in my RB26DETT but Ant was really keen to try some European beasts as we are both Jap car heads and Ant is very capable behind the wheel. I won’t be car racist anymore, I’ve gained huge respect for the German machines that accelerate out of corners which might put a 600 Supersport bike to shame!
The following week I managed to forget picking up a fish tank from a mate so I made the trip up again. While I was in Sydney again, I thought to bring Mark Wills to see the ASBK round in Eastern Creek for the day as he knew a few riders there and everyone else knew him. I found my buddy Glenn Allerton stretching on the EC Café floor and had to take a quick pic below. Mark had been helping out my mate Glenn Scott over the past years so we thought to give him a surprise by showing up unannounced (Mark doesn’t get out much). Glenn used to race for my old team and lived with me in Spain before he came back to oz, so, I’ve cooked him a few dinners, mainly lentils hehe. That’s why I wear his hat overseas. This year he races in Superbikes for the first time. Racing against riders like Glenn Allerton, Wayne Maxwell and Jamie Stauffer with his privateer Insure My Ride team, and he even made it to the podium. Great news, great racer, and great Team - thanks to IMR National Business Development Manager Luke Smith!
Glenn’s motto G.S.D (Get ‘Stuff’ Done) really reflects his attitude about making things happen by action instead of just talking or giving excuses. Glenn has learnt the system of moving forwards after making a mistake or when things go bad and he would know after losing both his parents in a motorcycle accident at 12. He was raised by his brother Greg and sister Candice only 6 and 8 years older. His trainer Steve Mion from Bulleen Health and Fitness who also looks after Honda boys Jamie Stauffer and Josh Hook exclaims how focused and determined Glenn is with his diet and training. Managing his first SBK podium on the weekend, Glenn was ecstatic with the race and is keen to get results at the next meeting in Darwin with his new found confidence, knowing he can mix it with Australia’s best.
After making the long drive back to Melbourne that night, I had a few hours rest before going to the HSV Walkinshaw factory the next day as Steve’s sports scientist David Rossiani (no relation to Rossi but big fan) had organised a tour for me with the addition of having a peek inside the Holden Racing Team factory based next door. We weren’t allowed photos but they claimed to construct a HSV car in roughly 8 hours although the Maloo UTE is made in 12. Why the extra 4 hours? Because of the sensors and a mad flap cover on the tray, plus lining everything up on the tray takes practice and love apparently. I managed to take one photo of a blown race tyre which ripped the wheel dramatically although you can’t see it. Because of the tour David gave me of the “laboratory-like” clean factory of HSV, I returned the favour and took him to Honda Racing Australia’s effort under Paul Free’s Motologic banner. He was blown away by how clean the headquarters were and we took a pic with Josh Hooks broken front fork from his Tassie incident.
David was the sports scientist of Carlton Football club for many years and actually has a degree and masters. So he also personally knows many AFL players such as Matty Kreuzer. I’ve never been to or even watched an AFL game on TV before and Matty got me tickets to their game that weekend thanks to Dave. I also got locker room passes so I could see the guys prep before a game which was unreal. Matthew is the ambassador for the Phillip Island MotoGP because he is an absolute bike nut, but also a car enthusiast, and wanted to see my purple Jap. Being 200cm tall he was towering over me (no I’m not a midget) whilst holding a Rossi helmet. He’s a huge Rossi fan and would like the opportunity to meet him. We’ll have to see Uccio in Brno and make that happen for him as he’s such a nice giant, I mean bloke..
Well it’s time to enjoy the last week of holidays before heading back, that means one last time of snowboarding, Glenn Allerton is heading to Mt Perisa to celebrate his missus Alana’s B’Day snowboarding. So hopefully I can manage to make the time for that too as I’ve never been and apparently they have 3 super mega cool mountains in one, yeah maaan!!
-- Previous Indy Sam Columns
-- Indy Sam - 2013 # 1 - Marinating In Jerez
-- Indy Sam - 2013 # 2 - Fried Frogs in Le Mans
-- Indy Sam - 2013 # 3 - Ant never gives up
-- Indy Sam - 2013 # 4 - Over Cooked and Carbon Black
-- Indy Sam - 2013 # 5 - Girls Just Want to Have Fun
-- Indy Sam - 2013 # 6 - Paradise of Women
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