The wonderful thing about working in MotoGP is being surrounded on all sides by motorcycles. It is therefore rather ironic that one of the downsides to working in MotoGP is that it leaves you with very little time to actually ride a motorcycle yourself. Your days are taken up with hanging around in airports, travel back and forth to race tracks, chasing news and information, managing a website, and a large amount of utterly unglamorous but exceptionally necessary administration. If talking to the greats of motorcycle racing is the high point, filling in endless spreadsheets for the tax man is surely the low point.
From time to time, however, I do get a chance to ride. Assen, Silverstone and the Sachsenring are all races which are close enough to travel to by motorcycle (I do not own a car, and haven't for twelve years or so). Though it is a wonderful feeling to spend some real time in the saddle, the trip is too often just a single day, spent largely on highways. And as everyone knows, motorcycles are made for curves, not straights.
The coming 10 days or so will be different. First thing on Monday morning, I shall throw my leg over my trusty motorcycle and spend the next three days riding down to Florence, and Mugello. Day 1 will be a long trip to Southern Germany over highways, day 2 will be spent crossing the Alps (in the rain, if the weather forecasters are to be believed) via Austria and Northern Italy, while day 3 will see me cross the Po valley, head down the coast and then inland to Florence. On the Monday after Mugello, I will ride over the Futa pass - the legendary road between Florence and Bologna, where Ducati have tested so many of their road bikes - before heading up to Asolo to visit the Alpinestars factory. From there, another three-day trip home.
This means that the site may be a little less active than normal, as I shall be spending a lot of time in the saddle. I shall try to post regular updates on my progress to the site, as well as a couple of articles I have been working on for this event. I shall also be posting regular updates on the MotoMatters Twitter feed. If anyone sees a blue BMW R1200GS with motogpmatters.com stickers on the side (one day soon, I shall organize some new stickers with MotoMatters.com on them), give me a wave.
As traveling for so long by motorcycle means more nights in a hotel and plenty of fuel, it is a more expensive way of covering motorcycle races. If anyone would like to chip in, you can send money via the donate page. All contributions very gladly received.