Image result for jerez bike championshipThe first time we went to the Spanish Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix by motorbike was in 2001. We had been there two years before but by car. Six months earlier my boyfriend and I had bought a racing motorbike and we were more than excited with the idea of relishing the trip and watching the sporting event as the rest of those dead keen motorcyclists. Some friends came along joining a gorgeous group of eight motorbikes and eleven people.

I will never forget waiting for a traffic light in Valladolid. In a matter of thirty seconds more than forty motorbikes arrived from very different places: Galicia, Asturias, The Basque Country, just to name a few. The feeling of being members of a greater group delighted us and we had the hunch that it would be a terrific enjoyable trip. Ahead, we had hundreds of kilometres of secondary roads to be crossed as fast as we could. Nevertheless I have to admit that racing motorbikes aren’t cut out for pillion passengers with long legs.

Tens of children and teenagers remained on every highway bridge, hoisting big placards to back up our Spanish pilots. Likewise, the rest of pilots were in good spirits and even, the Guardia Civil offered helping hand in the petrol stations or wherever we needed them.

When we arrived at Jerez, the entire city was a huge party since the organization had prepared a schedule of different events in several points of the city. Never before had I fancied a very long avenue, full of safety measures, to perform acrobatics each one at a term. Striking!!!

And finally, the day of the race arrived. Have you ever envisaged seventy thousands motorbikes parked one next to the other? As the elite performers in motor say “Spanish supporters are the best in the world” and this picture is worth keeping in our mind.

Regrettably, the political upward trend to put fences in the fields, the drug abuse, some mortal accidents, the speed limits, and so forth, played havoc on this celebration. Five years later, this event became something of a far cry from the one in 2001. Just to give you a clear example, reaching the centre by motorbike was forbidden unless you had a booking in a hotel. Never again.

Once bitten, twice shy.

© Plataforma creada por Alfonso Hinojosa - Profesor de Inglés de la E.O.I. de Santander