BMW R1200GSA vs Moto Guzzi Stelvio NTX

Friday, 8 February 2013

Formula 1 testing in Jerez,  then the Socceroos vs Romania friendly in Malaga. I take my wife to so many great events.

Wednesday 6/2/13

We got away reasonably early this morning. The first thing we realised was that if we had turned right instead of left last night when we left the hotel, we would have stumbled onto the main shopping area full of restaurants instead of the small supermarket we sourced dinner from.

On the way out of town I got an answer to a question that had been bothering me. Well, a partial answer anyway. What do they do with all the oranges that grow on the trees on side of the roads in the towns here? The council "removes" them. They shake the trees like hell, the oranges fall on the ground, and they pick them up. Very much like the way they harvest olives.

Shake the tree and the oranges fall on the ground.

Lots of oranges.

But what does the council do with the oranges? Is it legal for me to take the as I walk down the street? Will you come and bail us out if it's not? By the way, riding on cobblestone roads, with squashed oranges all over them is a little unnerving.

We rode out of town and rolled the BM into the car park at Jerez to watch the F1 testing. Lo and behold, there was Drew's (another Aussie) little red Vespa. Unfortunately we didn't catch up with Drew during our visit. I'm sure he was busy handing out his resume to all the team managers in the pits. We hope you had a win mate.

We did meet Clive however. Clive is another BM rider who has done a bit of travelling, so we sat and swapped stories and Clive gave us some really good tips on where to go in Turkey. Thanks Clive. 

See, we were there. Look! Who's that leading the pack in the poster behind us. It's another Aussie.

 Mark Webber, another Aussie, warming up for the season ahead. It looked to me like he was suffering a bit of under-steer, but what would I know, I'm a motorcyclist.

What the? Another bloody Aussie. Perth boy and Torro Rosso Team (Red Bull junior team) driver Daniel Riccardo under the Jerez sign at the track. At least I think it's Daniel.

Suzanne bought a T shirt for ten euros. I shopped up a storm and bought two T shirts for 15 euros. Hang the expense.
I win!

Suzanne's serious "I'm watching race cars" face.

While we were enjoying a refreshment we met John and Chris. John and Chris are a couple of poms who have retired to a little village called Taba, here in Spain. We got talking and they told us about a friend of theirs, Mark Comers, who runs BMW Moto Hire. It's a business for people who want to ride in Spain or Morocco but don't want to ship their bikes here. 


If you want to join us on our Moroccan adventure, give Mark at BMW Moto Hire a call, or email him, and organise a bike NOW. Come and spend a week or so touring Morocco and Portugal with us. I guarantee you'll have an absolute ball. Check out his website:

Rex, Gary, I expect to hear from you both, very soon.

I could only watch so much F1 stuff, and although Suzanne really, really wanted to stay longer (Yeah, right) we had to get going if we were going to get to Malaga to watch the Socceroos game. So off we went. A lot of the ride to Malaga was on a freeway, but the last third was fun. 

How green is that crop? And yes, more mountains.

Suzanne being creative and shooting a self portrait.

The flight deck.
Playtime again. Spanish road designers must all be motorcyclists.

My playpen.

Every day I love Spain a little bit more.

I wonder how much I could buy that for?
Dave, I'll need a bit of handyman work done.

Left, right, left, right. It's like being in the army.
Enlist now.

We arrived in Malaga late in the afternoon and rode around looking for a cafe with WiFi so we could search for a hotel on the net. We were running out of time if we wanted to see kick off at the Socceroos match. After a very quick dinner we headed back to the hotel we stayed in last time. It's a bit expensive, but it was nice. We went and booked in for a night and tomorrow I'll book the next four days on the web at a much reduced price. Agoda is a great web site for cheap hotel prices.

We grabbed a cab to the game, there's no point is risking drinking (even one drink) and driving in town with this traffic. Our taxi driver was really good and offered us a card suggesting we call him after the game and he'd come and get us. He even pointed out where to meet him. Yes, it's good business, but how often does it happen?

Wow! We were at our first international soccer game. Can you imagine the excitement? Tens of thousands of people all screaming for their team. The fireworks. The chanting. The flares.The atmosphere. The whole thing. It was going to be an epic experience that's for sure.


Firstly the Aussie supporters were sent up to the top tier of the grandstand while the Romanian supporters were on ground level. Secondly, they don't serve alcohol at sporting events in Spain. Thirdly, it was bloody cold. And lastly, there were only about two hundred or so people there. It was lucky that Suzanne and I went along because we boosted the Australian supporters by about ten percent, to a total of around twenty. The Aussie supporters were outnumbered by the Aussie team and support staff. Tickets were only ten euros, as opposed to ninety five dollars for a friendly back home, so that wasn't the reason for the lack of people. Who knows?       

One of the Aussie supporters was from Kalgoorlie and knew my cousin's family, of course. It really is a small world.

At the end of the night, after a lacklustre game, Romania defeated the Socceroos 3-2, so it was a disappointing night for us.

The Australian supporters. Yes, we are there somewhere.
The Romanian supporters were down the bottom of the stand.

Coulda, woulda, shoulda.

Blurry self portrait. I want my old camera back.

After the game we slowly walked outside through all the jubilant Romania supporters and made our way to the spot where the taxi said he'd meet us. We didn't need to call him as he was already there waiting for us. To top off his good service he even discounted the fare when he dropped us off. If you want a good taxi in Malaga, let me know and I'll send you his number.

A huge thank you to Suzanne for putting up with a FULL day of boy's stuff today. F1 Grand Prix testing, motorcycle riding through the mountains of Spain, a soccer (futbol) match, and more. Suzanne, I couldn't replace you even if I wanted too. If you tell anyone this I'll deny it. What? It's in the blog? D'oh!

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