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Old 31-Mar-2009, 11:42 AM
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WeeJohnyB WeeJohnyB is offline
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Portimao Write Up

Posted on the other channel as there were a few ex DSC members there.

Talking to the No Limits Team and many of our customers, it’s hard to know how we could have had a better time – one-to-one brolly dollies was the only decent suggestion. The circuit and paddock facilities were first class as you would expect, the hotel was good (nice massage in the spa), plenty of bars and restaurants nearby and three days of sunshine up to 28 degrees – it will be horribly hot there soon – I had to resort to wearing my one piece under-suit as after the first day as it took 2 instructors to help drag my leathers off my little fat body!

One of the best bits was the company – so many friendly faces and new faces to names, the vast majority of the people there were regular customers of No Limits, so the behaviour on and off track was superb – we had one off in three days, yep, read that again, one, a slow speed low-side where the guy picked it up and rode back – no red flags and I don’t think we even had a yellow with over 130 people over three days – unheard of – the circuit staff were totally gobsmacked as they are used to lots of crashes on bike trackdays. Excellent banter off the circuit as well and a few late nights. Two separate groups threatened all week to throw me in the pool in the paddock (yes the paddock has a pool!), but I managed to avoid getting wet.

As none of us had done the circuit before, the instructors were given 15 minutes to ‘learn’ the track before we had to lead the first group out. I was out first and had the track to myself for 6 laps – awesome experience. I’d watched all the youtube stuff and gone round the circuit map several times to try to steal a march on others as leading out the fast group was going to be a bit daunting when none of us knew where we were going. The video’s don’t do it any justice at all really – in particular, you can’t see the elevation and camber changes until you are on the circuit – I dare you to hold the throttle on full going over the hill – pilots licence required.

The Motofrieght boys transported the biggest number of bikes abroad they have ever done and most tyres changed – they were non-stop virtually as it’s a very grippy track. After unloading the bikes on Tuesday night, the instructors placed all the bikes and everyone’s kit next to their bike in the pit garages all ready for the morning – that took us 6 hours, so it was a well deserved few beers in the hotel late on Tuesday night. I’d left home at 4,00am and was still humping bikes around at 10.30pm, so the first day on track was knackering. I rode like a lemon all week and wasn’t happy at all with myself. I think the only laps I was happy with were the final ones I did in the last fast session on the last day before packing up – I just relaxed and enjoyed the track and the sunshine and the bike and reckon I went a couple of seconds faster than I did all week, never mind, next time! Even the offer of a ride on Final Editions 998 for the last session didn’t get me back on the bike after that, but thanks for the offer Andy.

I’ve never done so much instruction mind you. I instructed in most of the novice sessions all three days and also a few in the inters which made it non stop brief/instruct/debrief. If you add the sessions in the fast group to enjoy myself, it meant a lot of miles and a lot of fuel. I am cream crackered now as I’m not bike fit at all. There was a suggestion from one of the ISC boys that I should earn Ł10 for every second I knocked off people’s lap times – could have paid my tyre and fuel bill on that basis as a few tips on braking on/off points, lines and body position make a big difference on this track. Some of the turns have more than one line. I used a line at one corner until another instructor came past me on the outside - soon changed that one obviously! One of the guys with us, Ollie, got down to 1.52 on a 600, proper fast that is.

I got the chance to ride Dave Pratt’s Hyper on track which was, let’s say as ‘different’ to my 600 as you can get – sit up and wide bars, springy suspension, brakes like an on/off switch and pegs that touch down at will (I kept scrapping my boots to try and protect Dave’s pegs). Fair play to Dave for riding it so well on track, great fun though. I also took out MW’s DD bike – my first ever go on a DD bike. A bit like a CB500 with decent brakes, suspension and power, (ok nothing like the CB really then!), but great fun for a couple of flying laps before the fuel light came on. I would have enjoyed a bit of time to get used to it and see what it could do – too easy to spin the rear Pirelli though Mike – can you please ensure it has new rubber next time!!!

I reckon about a third of the people who went have already said to me they will be booking again for our November dates – it was a superb trip and I’m certainly going to see if I can persuade WeeMrsB to let me go again. Favourite track? Maybe. Favourite trip? None better.

I’ll do a write up of a lap when I get the chance for those going soon. Great to meet so many ISC and DSC peeps, loads of Ducati’s there inc the lovely 1098RS pictured on the ISC site

Thanks to all the ISC and DSC old and new friends for making it a memorable event. Plenty of pics on the ISC site.

WeeJohnyB
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Old 31-Mar-2009, 08:46 PM
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your pics are up too
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Old 31-Mar-2009, 09:50 PM
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excellent report mister. I can't wait to go in a few weeks just a same we couldn't do it with you guys!
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Old 31-Mar-2009, 10:04 PM
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Sounds great - what sort of lap times were you doing? What's a decent time around there?
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Old 31-Mar-2009, 11:06 PM
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harriebird harriebird is offline
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i'm very tempted for november.... gotta hope the great british public keep buying fashion jewellery by the bucket load and then should be good to go
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Old 01-Apr-2009, 11:36 AM
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DSC Member Monty Monty is offline
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Next year mate-with a new bike and hopefully a sorted wrist.

John


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Old 01-Apr-2009, 11:40 AM
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Great write up - hope that 28c holds for April...:-)

Note to self - eat salad - go swimming - do sit ups

What was the DD bike like to ride.....wasn't underpowered was it & the std diablo's gave enough grip (you said it was grippy!!).........

Asking as I might be taking one in April instead of my 998

Can't wait.....:-D

ps - the NL set up & organisation sounds great - will compare with FE then think about November - cash allowing!
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Old 01-Apr-2009, 05:57 PM
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WeeJohnyB WeeJohnyB is offline
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Sent you a U2U Chris - I'd go for the R6 mate unless you are in the novice group. If FE are running open pit lane, you'll be totally blitzed and I'd personlly say extremely dangerous on the straight.

Tim, this place reminds me of Jerez for the lap times, so the magic 2min lap is the target, although harder to do here. The start finish straight is a big key to a fast lap as you enter feathering then full on the throttle so it depends on how brave you are, then the braking for the end is crucial, but as the first bit is downhill at 160/170, you have to be brave to keep off the brakes until a more normal braking position, although there are lots of braking markers into the faster than it looks first corner.

WeeJohnyB
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Old 01-Apr-2009, 07:15 PM
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Rattler Rattler is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WeeJohnyB
.....Tim, this place reminds me of Jerez for the lap times, so the magic 2min lap is the target, although harder to do here. The start finish straight is a big key to a fast lap as you enter feathering then full on the throttle so it depends on how brave you are, then the braking for the end is crucial, but as the first bit is downhill at 160/170, you have to be brave to keep off the brakes until a more normal braking position, although there are lots of braking markers into the faster than it looks first corner.

WeeJohnyB

Oooohhhhh, risk /reward - sounds painful

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Old 01-Apr-2009, 09:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Rattler
Oooohhhhh, risk /reward - sounds painful


You are so translucent.
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