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Superbikes at the Ridge

dfleadflea Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 7,079
Swaye's Wigwam 10,000 Awesomes 5,000 Up Votes Eighth Anniversary
The MotoAmerica Superbikes will be at The Ridge motorsports park just north of Shelton at the end of June. VIP tickets are less than 200 bones so you can pretend to be a high roller even if you're pour like me.

These bikes are fucking cool, and the racing should be top shelf. They have a new grandstand up at the top of the hill, and if the weather is nice, you're going to have a hard time finding better racing anywhere near here.

You can take 101 all the way to the turn off to the track without ever going in to Shelton, which is nice. However, if you're willing to actually set foot in town, Bob's Tavern downtown has really good fried chicken and joes.
BleachedAnusDawgRaceBannonFishpo311to392831weretaken

Comments

  • RaceBannonRaceBannon Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 82,584
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    I actually miss Shelton and the Hood Canal
    dfleaDerekJohnson
  • 1to392831weretaken1to392831weretaken Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 5,803
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    I don't know what the $200 gets you for VIP. The paddock is already extremely open. It's like a club race on steroids, and I mean that in the best way possible. After the Superbike race, we were coming off the bridge, heading to the cafe to grab lunch, when a guy in leathers walks by. "Huh, that's Loris Baz." Then the winning Yamaha gets pushed right past me by a mechanic. No ropes, no bodyguards, just an open paddock with a (what is rumored to be WSBK spec and therefore several-hundred thousand dollar) amazing bike being pushed by. Next by was the race winner, whose girlfriend jumps up in his arms, TV crew filming the whole thing. "Huh, they really don't keep the fans away from anything here, do they?"

    I was super impressed with the quality of the show they put on when it comes to putting out the big screens and speakers to follow the TV coverage while watching what's in front of you. I took the kids last year, and it was amazing, but it was also 107 degrees out, so we only stayed for the two main races and then got out of there. If it weren't a heat wave, I'd have booked a room somewhere and made a weekend of it. I can't even comprehend the kind of lap times those guys were throwing down when the tires must have been boiling.

    The Ridge is super awesome (for those who haven't been). Yes, the upper grandstands and pedestrian bridge were additions that had to happen to make a spectator event like this possible. Before, it was a great track to ride but boring to watch, as all you could see was the ridge complex and the front straight. With the upper viewing, the only turns you can't see are 3,4,5, and maybe 7. Nice little cafe with decent food, and I can't remember if they were running the Karts during the MotoAmerica event, but it looks fun if they do. The Kart track is a 1/5 scale model of the road course, elevation and all.

    I'm currently scheduled to work that weekend, but I'm going to try some finagling.
    dflea
  • dfleadflea Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 7,079
    Swaye's Wigwam 10,000 Awesomes 5,000 Up Votes Eighth Anniversary
    edited April 7

    I actually miss Shelton and the Hood Canal

    Yeah, I do too. When I was in high school and you were only 3 or 4 hundred years old, going out to Hood Canal was the shit. Crab, shrimp, oysters, clams, salmon - it was a fucking seafood cornucopia out there.

    It's not what it used to be, but it's still pretty cool. A 15 minute drive from the track and you can eat in Union or at Alderbrook and get Olympics views that will blow your mind.

    If you want to fly up for the weekend, I'll buy your race ticket and you can crash at my house. June 25th and 26th if I remember right.
    RaceBannon
  • RaceBannonRaceBannon Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 82,584
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    The family insurance agent had a big party every 4th of July at their summer place on the canal

    Then my high school girlfriend had a family spot up there

    Loved the hiking on the rivers

    I appreciate the offer. Who knows
    dflea
  • dfleadflea Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 7,079
    Swaye's Wigwam 10,000 Awesomes 5,000 Up Votes Eighth Anniversary

    I don't know what the $200 gets you for VIP. The paddock is already extremely open. It's like a club race on steroids, and I mean that in the best way possible. After the Superbike race, we were coming off the bridge, heading to the cafe to grab lunch, when a guy in leathers walks by. "Huh, that's Loris Baz." Then the winning Yamaha gets pushed right past me by a mechanic. No ropes, no bodyguards, just an open paddock with a (what is rumored to be WSBK spec and therefore several-hundred thousand dollar) amazing bike being pushed by. Next by was the race winner, whose girlfriend jumps up in his arms, TV crew filming the whole thing. "Huh, they really don't keep the fans away from anything here, do they?"

    I was super impressed with the quality of the show they put on when it comes to putting out the big screens and speakers to follow the TV coverage while watching what's in front of you. I took the kids last year, and it was amazing, but it was also 107 degrees out, so we only stayed for the two main races and then got out of there. If it weren't a heat wave, I'd have booked a room somewhere and made a weekend of it. I can't even comprehend the kind of lap times those guys were throwing down when the tires must have been boiling.

    The Ridge is super awesome (for those who haven't been). Yes, the upper grandstands and pedestrian bridge were additions that had to happen to make a spectator event like this possible. Before, it was a great track to ride but boring to watch, as all you could see was the ridge complex and the front straight. With the upper viewing, the only turns you can't see are 3,4,5, and maybe 7. Nice little cafe with decent food, and I can't remember if they were running the Karts during the MotoAmerica event, but it looks fun if they do. The Kart track is a 1/5 scale model of the road course, elevation and all.

    I'm currently scheduled to work that weekend, but I'm going to try some finagling.

    Well, I'm about to find out what 175 bones gets you. If nothing else, it gets us a better chance that the track will keep good racing on the menu. I'm still astounded that this track exists so close to my place and has this caliber of racing on tap.
    1to392831weretaken
  • BleachedAnusDawgBleachedAnusDawg Member Posts: 6,790
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    Under an hour drive for me. Might check it out with my oldest kid.
    1to392831weretakendflea
  • 1to392831weretaken1to392831weretaken Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 5,803
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    Couple of the pros are out here shaking things down ahead of the races this weekend. Getting passed por fuera in the Carousel while setting a PR lap is special...

    Weather looks good this weekend. Be there or be square.
    dflea
  • dfleadflea Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 7,079
    Swaye's Wigwam 10,000 Awesomes 5,000 Up Votes Eighth Anniversary
    I'm ready to roll into the VIP parking area tomorrow and then get a little breakfast before the race. Maybe a couple bloody Marys, too.

    Looks like the weather is dialed in.
    1to392831weretaken
  • 1to392831weretaken1to392831weretaken Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 5,803
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    dflea said:

    I'm ready to roll into the VIP parking area tomorrow and then get a little breakfast before the race. Maybe a couple bloody Marys, too.

    Looks like the weather is dialed in.

    I made a shift trade to be able to go. I'm going with kids 12 and 10, so three days of racing is a bit much for their microscopic attention span (plus they've been to the track plenty with me, so been there/done that). So we're going to hit up the Sounders game Saturday, stay overnight somewhere down there, then hit the track bright and early for all-day racing Sunday. Please post a review here afterward about what the VIP treatment gets you. MotoAmerica is so chill that I can't imagine what you actually gain from that. Hope it's awesome for you, though.

    csb: I was at the track riding Monday and Tuesday. Because 4:30 in the morning is early enough for me to wake up, I always rock up dead last and have to pit on the far side of the moon. Meaning I was the closest pit to where the MotoAmerica trucks were rolling in all day long both days. They'd spin a big U-turn, narrowly missing my truck, then pull up to a pressure washer by the track bridge. All of the drivers and crew would then hop out and start soaping up truck and trailer to get them bright and shiny for the fans. Very first thing they did when they arrive, so they're not fucking around.

    Not doxxing myself thanks to the helmet and fat suit, but...



    That was supposed to be double hang-loose signs with my hands, but I'd literally just come off track, so my hands were cramping and didn't work. The poor high school girl I pulled away from loading chairs and tables into the nearby garage to take the picture probably thought I was flashing the double shockers... While that was being taken, the crew was blasting away and scrubbing the other side of that trailer.

    Anyway, there was a lot of traffic in my group, but I was still able to lay down four laps in the 1:57s and a low 1:58, all better than my previous best. This puts me "only" 17 seconds per lap slower than the Superbike race winner last year and, IIRC, 13 seconds per lap slower than the winning Supersport. I'm going to enjoy that for another 24 hours, until (thanks to it not being 107 degrees out this year) those guysm start busting out laps in the 1:38s, if not faster. One more day of being less than 20 seconds down...
    dflea
  • 1to392831weretaken1to392831weretaken Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 5,803
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    Badass!

    I'm starting to think we move this race to early April every year so we can get rid of the rain sooner and start cooking...
    dflea
  • dfleadflea Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 7,079
    Swaye's Wigwam 10,000 Awesomes 5,000 Up Votes Eighth Anniversary
    That was a good show. Fuck, was it hot. I would have croaked without the breeze.
  • 1to392831weretaken1to392831weretaken Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 5,803
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    dflea said:

    That was a good show. Fuck, was it hot. I would have croaked without the breeze.

    Last year was somehow WAY hotter. It's amazing the times those guys (and girl) can run in that kind of heat. I even heard that some were running ultra-softs in the races! Riding greasy tires sucks, and I have to imagine they got about a half-dozen laps before they were total greaseballs.

    For me, the most impressive lap times were from the smaller bikes. As somebody who has ridden an FZ-07 (or MT-07 or R7; same bike) and built my brother's into something similar to what those guysm are racing on, seeing somebody crank out 1:47s on one is something I can't wrap my head around. I know it's a builder's series, so they probably have those engines up to about 100 hp of ticking time bomb, that's still fucking incredible. And then to see what looked like about a 14-year-old girl bust out a 1:53 on a Ninja 400, giving up roughly 140 hp and going four seconds per lap faster than me, made my cock'nballs shrivel and fall completely off. I'm a Ken doll now.

    Was the VIP treatment worth it?
    dflea
  • dfleadflea Member, Swaye's Wigwam Posts: 7,079
    Swaye's Wigwam 10,000 Awesomes 5,000 Up Votes Eighth Anniversary


    Was the VIP treatment worth it?

    I don't know because I've never been there without one - but it didn't look like you gained all that much. It was nice having food and drink and a cool place with big screen tvs to take a break here and there, though. I'll probably pay it again as it's a pretty cheap VIP pass, and I want to support their efforts out at the track.

    With some proper upgrades and a few trees cut down so you could see the Olympics from the grandstands, that track could go places and bring lots of scratch to Mason County.
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