Monday 20th June
Lay Day at Nurgurgring
The ring was shut for the week & it was still pissing down rain so we had a bit of a lay day to dry out. After we did all the washing & usual stuff we got board & went for a ride in the rain around the awesome roads near the Nurburgring. The roads are like race tracks with hot melt smooth tar & cambered corners with great vision around them. Also the coppers don’t give a shit what you get up to so it’s a fair bit of fun even in the wet. We went to a near buy town to replace the air bed with no luck but we bought some supplies to cook up back at Sliders for tea.
Tuesday 21st June
We left our new biker friends from Sliders Guesthouse (thanks Brendon) & rode the short distance to Dusseldorf which took a little over an hour on the Autobahn at warp factor 9 again. We set up camp right near the centre of town & went for a hunt for a new air bed. We went past a few bars on the promenade & of course dropped in for a stein or 2. Then programmed the GPS to find a shopping centre & it took us for an awesome walk through the parks of Dusseldorf. Successfully found an air bed which is way better than our first one then made our way back to the promenade for dinner, beers & while the night away right on the Rhine River.
Wednesday 22nd June
Arrive at Assen MotoGP
We were packed up early in our now very efficient packing system the 2 of us have now got down to a fine art. Programmed the GPS for no motorways & made our way up the Rhine River to Wesel. We were expecting castles but only found industrial areas so the nice bit of the Rhine must be south of Dusseldorf, never mind they were fun roads & it wasn’t raining. Quick check of the itinerary & we are ment to be at our camp site in Assen today so back on the Autobahn & off towards Netherlands we go. You knew when you hit the Dutch boarder because you have to slow down from 200kph to 90kph & there are a crap load of police to make sure you slow down. It’s a bit boring the ride into Assen as Holland is very flat & the roads are straight with a very restrictive speed limit of 120kph at best. Firstly we went into the town of Assen to resupply the cash then of to our camp. We were one of the first ones to set up camp right next to Peter from Scotland which was a great idea as the camp ground soon filled to capacity. Luckily we managed to stumble across the best campground site in Assen, TT Sienen, there are quite a few & most of them don’t expect to get any sleep at all. I have been to Phillip Island, Eastern Creek & Bathurst & none of them know how to party on like Assen knows how to, unbelievable, I have never seen anything like it. We went back into town as we had to get internet to pay the bills & I wanted to find a “Coffee Shop”. We managed to do both & replace our towel we left back in Switzerland so all was good with the universe except for the persistent rain. We finally got to sleep through all the Doof Doof music, revving engines & explosions from neighboring campsites. Thank god we got the Quiet one!
Thursday 23rd June
Assen MotoGP Day 2
Right up & early but forget about getting a shower as there was a massive line up so a pommy shower was had & off to the first day of practice. I haven’t heard the 800cc MotoGP bikes & I was looking forward to the experience, f@#k they are load, no wonder they give you ear plugs with your tickets. It was pissing down as has become the norm over here so the practice was quite entertaining with a few crashes especially in the Moto2 600cc. We went for a walk right around the track to check out all the vantage points & to find where our grandstand seats were for Saturday’s race. The practice was called off after the first round due to an oil spill & bad weather. Casey Stoner was fastest in the wet Practice for day 1 so we were happy then made the half hour walk back to our camp past all of the party camps. On the way back we spotted our young Aussie mate Clint walking down the road, sweet. We meet Clint at the train station to pick our bikes up then he was part of the Ginger Hall crew then here he is at Assen camped up right next to us. I did give him the details for the camp site though. We caught a very fine Audi taxi into town for a proper Dinner & a few more beers. Back to the camp site, more of the awful Dutch music being played then of to bed again with Doof Doof, revving engines & explosions in the next camps.
Friday 24th June
Assen Moto GP Day 3
A little bit better weather greeted us, cold overcast but at least not bloody raining. I recon over the past 7 weeks of traveling excluding the Isle of Man we have been rained on every day except for 3 days in Switzerland & this is summer. Anyway of to practice we went with another Pommy shower which ended up being pretty good with Simonchlli then Spies then Stoner in third, at least the Aussie on the front row of the grid. Casey Stoner is not very liked over here, they call him Casey Moner & you can’t buy any of his merchandise either so we had to settle for Repsol Honda shirts. On the walk back to camp the heavens opened up again & drenched us before we made it to camp. Due to Friday being the busiest night in Assens we decided to stay and watch all the fun going on out in the street at the front of our camp ground. Thousands of people milled by all in the party mode and having a great time.
Saturday 25th June
Assen MotoGP race day
It wasn’t raining but still cold & overcast so hopefully it will hold out for the race. We found our way to the grandstand through more crowds & more bikes than I have ever seen. Apparently on the Friday night the population of Assen rises by over half a million, that’s a crap load of people. The start of the races was the kids in the Rookie cup on 125cc KTM’s & I thought I noticed an Aussie flag on the pole sitters arm band. It turned out I was right & the Aussie anthem was played for the first race of the day with a great fought last corner lunge Aussie victory, hopefully more to come. The 125cc were next with rain red flagging the race just past half way & I can’t remember who won it, Google it. Then the main race with Simonchelli on pole the Ben Spies & our Casey Stoner. On the first lap right in front of us Simonchelli took out Lorenzo on the hairpin, I got it all on video. Lorenzo got back into the race a fair bit ahead of Simmonchelli but by then in all the carnage Ben Spies managed to get a bit of a gap on Casey then the other Repsol of Devitsiosa. Casey started to make inroads on the gap & gapped his team mate behind but I think he was trying a bit too hard & getting too loose & it was Ben Spies day. Good on ya Ben for your first MotoGP win you deserved it & I hate to think what will be said about Simmonchelli though. Walked back to our camp through all of the burnt cars & carnage for a night of partying back at camp, they have the best street parties, got to be there to believe it. We were low on supplies so we had to go back into town so we had a spoon full of concrete, put the wet weathers back on & headed back into town on the Bird. As I pulled into the “Coffee Shop” to resupply & there was a heap of other Aussie bikes parked out in front, bloody Aussies, can’t take them anywhere. Back to camp for more awful Dutch music, Doof Doof, revving engines & explosions at least I got to sneak a shower in cause I was starting to smell a bit like wet dog but worse.
Sunday 26th June
We got packed up on a warm sunny morning with a great weather prediction for the next few days at least. I don’t know what is with the weather being shithouse for race days then the next day is spot on but I guess that is why we are Bikers, we experience the whole deal weather ‘n’ all. Off to Amsterdam we headed with Clint in tow & set up at an awesome campsite, Zeeburg, well done Tess on your research. Zeeburg is like a full on back packers place with all ages here & all with the same relaxed Amsterdam feel, firkin hundreds of tents. We got set up, Clint went to his hostel & we hung out at the bar for the rest of the night, at least we did our washing while we “Relaxed”, it was pretty manky.
Monday 27th June
HELL YEAH, AMSTERDAM ROCKS !!!! We caught the tram in from our campsite which only took a 10 minute walk & 7 minutes on the tram & we were at central station. With only a very vague map we made it to Amsterdam square with all of the street performers then through all of the shops. The shopping in Amsterdam is world class so it’s not just the coffee shops & red light district. Somehow we managed to come across the main coffee shop I wanted to see, Damkings of the movie oceans 12. After a short stop over there we found some better maps & made our way to the Vangough museum for a bit of culture. You think airport security is full on try getting into the Vangough museum, holly crap, I guess the original artwork would be worth a few Euros though. We then meandered our way through Amsterdam, found an Aussie bar for lunch, ate some kangaroo, more coffee shops then a walk through the red light district for a laugh. Talk about catering for all fetishes, some of the windows you didn’t want to look through, think fat grandma with huge tits & I just ate! Anyway we made it back on our tram to the campsite & at the bar listening to Bob Marley having a relaxing time in Amsterdam, think we might stay for a little while.