Wednesday, November 29, 2006

some dumb pics from eastern creek. turns out the guy i thought was on a gsxr1000 was on a yamaha. actually now that i look more closely he's probably on a frikken 600. which explains why it was so easy to blow him off down the straight, although i'd like to think that even though i wasn't draggin my knee around the corners, that i kept up with him ok around the corner bits. but then, i'm on slicks and he's on treads. unfortunately he was only out for that one session, at least in my group. i would have enjoyed sparring with him a little more.

i'll get a better chance though on our next outing as our second fastest rider can't make it and i'll be riding in his group. i usually end up quickest in the 3rd (out of 4) group, so i think i'll be amongst at least a few of my speed, the rest no doubt will be going past fast :-)

goin left maybe turn 2, dunno. probably going into turn 4 and then more turn 4, goin up the straight (a little more grunt would be nice) and mostly likely turn 9. this is the coolest toy!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

well, despite being a weekday, i've had the coolest day. team pig goes to the track. (you think the bike is ugly, you should see the riders)

went up to eastern creek for a groovy day of fun in the sun. after the rain on the weekend and monday i thought we might be in for a wet track day, and me tiptoeing around the corners, but the sun shone (and the wind blew) and i had a great day.

pictures later. the paparazzi was busy stuffing around with the camera and not much on the track times. much as i want to see where i'm screwing up on the track, i really wanted to get a vague idea of times for my last two sessions. i felt i was going faster than i've ever gone here. but feelings can be deceptive (cue my love life hehehehe)

the last time i was at eastern creek, i managed one of my fastest laps, on a lap that felt my most kookiest. braking late and wierd, stuffed up lines, and wobbling all over the place. an indications of how easy this toy is to ride fast.

but this felt good. the only place i wasn't happy was turn 8. pretty much as quick as i go leaned over, apart from turn 1. i was buzzing around there at high revs in 3rd, while last time i was midranging 4th all the way around. i think i short probably short shift and use 4th next time, it feels more comfortable, and i think that when i'm revving hard while cornering i freak myself out a bit and back off.

in the first coupla sessions there was another guy out there with a gsxr1000, a bit newer than mine, with similar horsepower. it was a lot of fun chasing him around. i was cornering a little quicker (slicks) and blew him away down the straight a few times (maybe i was in the right gear) but he'd overtake me while was sitting behind newbie/slowbies (trying not to freak them out) so i'd chase him again. i think he might have gone up to the next quickest group. he'd have been pretty quick in that group i reckon.

couple of slides through turn two, working on high speed turn one (i reckon my eyes are still as big as tennis balls when i turn in), trying to be smooth and enjoy myself and not panic

panic moments:
turn 1: going too slow, not accelerating when i should, ended up with my knee over the grass and the front wheel heading there, fortunately my right hand knew what to do, wound it on, moved me out from the edge. brain 0, throttle hand 1.

turn 2: impatience and trying to wind it on too quick. i saw my brother over by the side of the track with the camera and didn't want to be caught tooling through the turn, so i squatted into it and opened up the throttle, only to have the back tyre start to move around on me and nearly give me a "brown moment". (note to self, look at the track and ignore the paparazzi)

i didn't scare myself as much as i usually do at the other turns, perhaps i'm not trying hard enough, but i had another at turn 1. had spent a few laps working myself up for a high speed entry, only to have a slower rider in front of me doing what seemed like 20kph. damn these brakes are good

turn 8: i see a puff of dust, woops, someone must be off, i cruise through next 3 corners to find that there's an earthmover off to the side of the track

going around wakefield definitely was a good thing. that short twist track gave me confidence wrestling with the bike. i'm still a little shy at higher speeds though. more track time needed.

next, need tyre pressure gauge (ours are broked/lost), heat gloves (lost), hand cleaner (need petrol for tank, not hands), tune up (other riders say engine needs work) and more grunt :-)

Sunday, November 12, 2006

well yesterday was a fun day.

we went to the national maritime museum for "an afternoon of sea stories".

with our usual disorganisation we didn't leave in time. i'd hoped to spend some time wandering around the museum before the presentation, but as it was we arrived about 5 mins after it started. we didn't miss much but by the time it finished the museum was closed and we missed out.

the presentation was excellent. Keith Gordon, the first presenter, talked about the ship, RMS Niagra, and how it was sunk in New Zealand waters during world war 2, and the lengths that a bank in england went to, to get back the gold from 120 metres.

then Don McIntyre told us of his experiences sailing singlehandedly around the world in the 1990 boc challenge race. coincidentally, my brother used to work for another of the sailors in that race, Kanga Birtles. it was a very interesting tale and his yacht had several cameras positioned around it to record his travels, including getting knocked over and then righting again in the southern ocean. something that happened to most of them a few times.

Mark Spencer talked to us about some of the shipwrecks in Australia, including the Catterthun and the Cumberland. he also talked a little about a project to explore an Australian submarine sunk in Turkey in the first world war. apparently his group has been given some money by the australian government to go back next year and document/photograph it. i'm waiting for the next installment.

then Steve Carruthers talked about the "missing" midget submarine that attacked sydney in 1942. i admit, i didn't think that talking about a missing midget submarine was going to keep me entertained for 45 minutes, but it waas interesting and although i may not cough up $40 for the book just yet. i'm waiting to see what happens with this next as well. they have a few new interesting search sites, which at the very least, will provide a few new shipwrecks.

now to feed the kidlets and see what the day brings

Sunday, November 05, 2006

another mind blowing weekend.

admittedly the weather wasn't the finest. but i rate my weekends on how i experience them. not on the weather.

the weather was kinda crap. we joined the boat friday arvo. it was overcast and a little cool. as we tendered out to the boat we noticed that the visibility was better than it had been for the last 6-ish weeks, which was very encouraging.

the forecast wasn't the best though. ese swell, 1 to 1.5 metres and southerly breezes. on saturday we managed some nice diving on the north side of bowen island. after washing up the lunch dishes i got in for a cruisy little dive through the nursery. nothing very exciting. some big wobbegongs, blue groper, a large eastern king wrasse, and an even larger blue morwong, or some other kind of big swimming fishy thing.

the customers seemed to be enjoying themselves though. which wasn't surprising. this group is the coolest. everyone enjoys themselves.

which turned out to be a bonus, because the first sunday dive was a shitfight. i had to aid to divers in distress. scuba can be very insidious. a couple of the divers wanted to go down our descent line, but the wind was pushing us too fast and we weren't anchored. they got into grief and if you breathe short and fast on scuba, it's like an, um, thingy that gets worse and worse.

so i ended up at the bottom of the ladder, up to my arse and armpit deep in cold salt water dragging people up the ladder. oh well, it was cold and rainy anyway. i was always gonna end up cold and wet. got to see humpback whales flapping their tailfins and flukes, and listen inb to a rescue where neither the rescuers or rescuerees had the vaguest idea on how to use the radio, which is a bit of a worry when the radio is the tool you are using to convey distress but the rescueree and deliver help, by the rescuer.

ever seen the "dad's army" telly show? wellit kinda reminded me of that.

but, they have a good boat, and they were very slick with getting the stricken yacht under control, and it's very easy to cast stones and be critical. pity they sounded so clueless over the radio.

oh well. they got the job done

Thursday, November 02, 2006

after spending the last two days watering the lawn (sorry people who are drought stricken) as my grass was dying and the bindies were flourishing, now it's raining.

oh well. at least if it's raining that means i can't mow or weed the lawn. although i don't mind weeding the lawn. it's very relaxing. you pick a square metre of lawn, and get a beer, then you pull out anything that isn't grass, after a couple of beers, you stop.

next step, working out what to do with the bbq. i got the bbq plate for this house back from my brother, and a bbq ring thingy which you can use for cooking pots and stuff on. so i've been scrubbing rust and rubbing in oil. got a little ways to go. but i had a steak on it last night that didn't poison me.

gonna be a big summer. bring it on

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