Sepang Racing April 2015
Nooooo….It can’t be 5.00am already!!!!
Please don’t let it be so….*sigh*
Alas, the continuous beep emanating from the dreaded phone, strategically positioned on the other bedside table where I cannot reach it without disturbing Him-will summon the deaf.
After 4 hours of sleep (after going through ‘the list’ over and over), it is time to summon all the excitement I can, to show support and approval of the upcoming event I am going to witness.
Van packed with petrol containers, bike, fan,chairs and so on, stomach gurgling, bags beside me in the lift, we descend to embrace a new adventure-
Sepang Race Track where hundreds of enthusiastic motorbike riders will challenge themselves and each other to better their times, beat each other and hopefully make it around the track still on their beast and in one piece.
Sitting in the front seat, the air electric with excitement emanating from the driver, we touch our pass onto the gate and join the traffic flow. A small piece of driftwood being carried along on the current of organised chaos.
As we head over the bridge, I cast my gaze over the general direction of Sepang. It is a good 40 minute trip, along main highways, being passed by cars and trucks exceeding 120km per hour, while we sit on 110kph.
But there is a problem, the color of the sky in that direction is dark, flashes of lightning are piercing the grey, this is not looking too promising. Though we are living in Malaysia where it is not uncommon to have sudden storms blow in, this particular storm was not anticipated. There is a startling difference between Malaysian storms and Australian storms. Malaysian storms hit with the temperature not wavering from the 32 degrees plus. The rain drenches you and is so ferocious that scooter riders shelter under bridges, traffic comes to a standstill with cars slowing to a stop, hazard lights blinking (not to be confused with the use of indicators which is non-existent). These down pours generally last up to one to two hours at best, drowning the soil to the point where it cannot be absorbed, resulting in torrents and rivers and drenched ankles.
Secretly my heart soars, can this mean this adventure will be cancelled? I wont swelter in front of fans circulating hot air. My tooshie wont stick to a plastic stool,
BUT Wait wet weather tyres can be used. Water can be swept out of puddles, the track can be more dangerous and slippery-please let common sense prevail.
Alas the mood in the van went from euphoria to silence, the occasional heavy-hearted sigh, a fist thump on the wheel and the face of a very despondent and sad rider.
“It looks like it is dispersing. It looks like it is lifting” brightness and hope infused into my voice.
Although I was very apprehensive about this adventure, I knew that the sadness, disappointment, frustration and wasted time would be more unbearable.
As we got closer to the Sepang track, my stomach began to knot u as it was getting more difficult peering through the windscreen. The rain was pelting down, the lightening was crackling overhead as the thunder shook the trees. This was one furious storm.
As we drive through the gates, the wind buffeting against the van, I steal a look at The Boy. His face is bleak, his posture is slumped and I think the storm brewing inside the van will give Mother Nature a run for her money.
We park the van and enter the pits. As i enter, my mind is cast back to the 2014 MotoGp where I was sitting amongst the crowd, behind the fence peering into these very pits trying to catch a glimpse of the demigods who mount their beast to defy time and speed to become Number One.
Riders such as Rossi, Marquez, Lorenzo, (just to name the current greats) have all walked through these pits. The local boys- Hafiz, Farmi (notice I’m on first name basis now) all started from these pits to become champions for their country.
The atmosphere inside the pits is sombre and reserved.
Yet the Boy was greeted with huge smiles, back slaps, hand shakes and the warmest of acknowledgements. As we walk through, cheeky comments started to fly
“I race you Mr Pat”
“Mr Pat, you race today?”
“Mr Pat, you have your bike?”
Hmmmmm….I am thinking that there is going to be a bit of ‘rival racing’ today.
I looked out the front of the pits. The sky is still opening up a barrage of drowning rain. I had thought that there would be a break, but alas this was not to be. The sky was still raining steadily, not one hint of blue.
As we waited for the authorities to make a decision about whether the racing will continue this afternoon, the mood is beginning to build.
Maybe there is a hint of blue over that way?
Is the rain lessening?
So we climb back into the van. Out through the gates and heading home. The storm following us back into the city.