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December 2019 Club News

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A Day in the Pits

By (Loose) Bruce Burges pics by Drew and John

My day in the pits at the hillclimb starts at 5.30am when I crawl out of my swag and head up to Marine Drive to help set up the start line. Extra helpers from entrants made it quicker this year, so we started getting riders organized and into place, while hanging out for a coffee and food. Thanks to the ladies manning BBQ for the egg and bacon roll.

Bruce opening his eyes.

Riders' briefing at 7.15, so chase up riders and listen to Steve read out the riot act. Trying to get all riders to start bikes and ride up the hill in one group is near-impossible. Thereís always about 6 still asleep and dragging their feet, till I yell at them.

Ready for the first run.
Up the hill they go, and bad luck no 17 youíre too slow.

Steve clears track and they all return ready for 2 timing runs. Ambos arrive and Firies are in place on schedule for an 8am start.

Bruce starting them off in pairs.
Andy in the van waffling to nobody in particular, Brendon on the flag, wheel-chockers in place, and off the first two go.

Interesting jacket decoration.
Damn, forgot the ear plugs. Luckily John Mac had a spare set as it's really loud standing behind 30 revving bikes.
Bruce pushing one of the bikes to start it.
Luckily the sun wasnít out too much, as one gets very hot standing on the bitumen all day and occasionally having to push-start a bike. Iím sure I walked 30km.

The first run is always unorganized as the riders work out who, what and how. Even get the odd bloke munching on a burger when he should be on his bike. Then they all get better at being up to line on time.

Bruce waiting with Tom Toad and his Morini.
Keep them moving, constantly looking for missing riders, who had a breakdown or just disappeared.
Half hour for a lunch break gone before you know and getting through the program in great time. 2.45pm
and finished.

Murrya Rudler and Peter Macdonald taking off.
Quickly start dismantling everything, award prizes and retire to caravan for a well-earned beer and put my feet up. Have dinner and back to tent to pass out. The Grumpy Old Man.

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