Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix Weekend – Places to go, people to see… | Events
You’ve finally made it to Phillip Island and you’re standing on the Grand Prix Circuit’s hallowed ground. What now?
The good thing about Australia hosting its round of MotoGP in the latter half of the year is it means the GP Expo is often the stage many manufacturers use to debut never-before-seen models. You can grab a handful of stickers, try on those new boots you’ve been thinking about, chew Dobie’s ear off about doing the points on your old bike, or just use it to escape the blazing sun or the bucketing rain — highly likely it’ll be one of the two.
GP-goers at the Island will be dazzled by three different types of aerial entertainment: the always amazing F/A-18A Hornets, the oh-so clever RAAF Roulettes and also the air force’s C-17A Globemaster III which will do a low-level pass just before the MotoGP race kicks off.
If you can stand seeing a two-wheeler without an engine this weekend, then get up to Lukey Heights for the Grand Prix BMX Stunt Show. They’ll perform ten 10-minute shows spread across the weekend and it’ll be well worth a squiz (especially if they’ve got a playing card pegged to their rear wheels for an authentic motorcycle sound).
The Bike Park
No, really. If you’ve got an hour to kill before your favourite riders hit the circuit, nick over to the motorcycle parking area — some of the gems you’ll stumble across are worth the entry ticket alone to cop an eyeful of in the metal.
A quick shave
This year’s Australian round of the MotoGP is getting its hipster on with the addition of Urban Alley to Gardner Village for the first time. As well as street artists producing live works and the Urban Garage playing host to a swag of custom bikes, GP goers can swing by the Urban Chop Shop for a new do, a beard trim or a hot towel straight razor shave. Do it on your way to the autograph stage — you’ll want to look your best.
Regardless of what you’re doing or where you’re doing it, when the clock strikes 4pm on Sunday 23rd October, get to the fence, a television, or a computer and settle in for 27 laps of the best motorcycle racing on earth on the most picturesque racetrack in the world.
Heaps, actually. There’s the Milk Shack Parent Pod (south of the Expo), Swann Insurance’s Full Tilt Virtual Reality ride (in the expo), the Dewalt Drive 5 Challenge, the Spokes Trackside Lounge, the myriad of merchandise tents… and did we mention Dobie would love to hear about the time you adjusted the points on your old dunger?
Can’t make it?
Whatever the reason, we won’t dwell on it, but if you can’t be trackside this year this is how you can pretend you are
Channel 10 and ONEHD will broadcast the live qualifying sessions and races for all classes and will run through until 5pm to include the MotoGP podium presentation. Fox Sports will broadcast the event, too, check local guides for details.
Ask anyone who has forked out their hard-earned for a subscription to the official online MotoGP coverage and they’ll tell you it’s money well spent. Being so late in the season, if you subscribe now, you’ll pick up a bargain for the remaining rounds.
There are some beaut MotoGP apps for your phone or tablet, both official or otherwise. The official MotoGP Live Experience app is coloured dots moving around an animated track in real time, as well as live timing and the latest news.
Tune into the circuit’s GPTV audio feed to ensure you’re not missing out on anything — even if you’re lined up for the loo. The frequency for the live commentary is 87.6FM.
World on track action
8am Gates open
10am Moto3 FP1 (40 mins)
10.55am MotoGP FP1 (45 mins)
11.55am Moto2 FP1 (45 mins)
1.35pm Moto3 Qualifying (40 mins)
2.30pm MotoGP FP4 (30 mins)
3.10pm MotoGP Q1 (15 mins)
3.35pm MotoGP Q2 (15 mins)
4.05pm Moto2 Qualifying (45 mins)
7pm Gates close
8am Gates open
10.40am Moto3 Warm-up (20 mins)
11.10am MotoGP Warm-up (20 mins)
11.40am MotoGP Warm-up (20 mins)
12.25pm MotoGP Parade lap
1pm Moto3 Grand Prix (23 laps)
2.20pm Moto2 Grand Prix (25 laps)
4pm MotoGP Grand Prix (27 laps)
7pm Gates close