Friday, April 18, 2008

Race Day at Leyda 4

Originally posted to El Cantar de la Lluvia on Monday, July 16, 2007

It's been a few months since I went to see Karlitos ride in the races at the Autódromo Pacífico Sport, at Leyda.

Just like past times, I took the 210 mm camera (instead of the digital), was allowed into the track area thanks to Karlitos' string pulling, and I spent the afternoon taking pictures.

On that day Will and Norm had come with me, the two fun lads doing the American continent from tip to tip on their BMW F650 GSs. I'd link to their website, but they don't have one. Oh well. We met then with Camilo on the trip to the Carretera Austral, and it just so happened that we reached Santiago before they did.

There are two reasons for not having published these pics sooner. The first is the quantity: 4 rolls of film. Eliminating the pics of low technical quality, I was left with about 100. I can't really put 100 nearly-identical pics in an article, so I went back five or six times to the collection of selected pictures over these past months, trying to whittle it down.

The other reason is that I wasn't too sure what to write about. Karlitos had provided me with some of his own writing for the previous articles, but this time I felt it wouldn't be possible to capture the style of an illustrated narration.

I leave you, then, with almost nothing but the pics.

* * *

Maestro Karlitos. And I mean it when I say maestro: not only was he the 2006 champ of the 400 cc promocional category at Leyda, but he also gives riding lessons to novice and experienced riders (when he's not working in his motorbike workshop/spa).

This was the first race D'Angelo rode the two-stroke Aprilia with its new colour scheme.

I'll never forget Oscar Tarragó's colours, who went down in front of my camera twice in one race

Speaking of going down...

A local favourite, Freddy Valderrama. See how the fiberglass cowling has been scraped away from his lean angle?

* * *

And now, the second half. I hope the noble gentlement of the 400 cc bikes will forgive me, but the bikes racing in this section are the visual candy of the article: the Superbikes category.

Concerning the track performance of the bikes, only a few riders in this category have lap times below those of the 400 cc bikes. There just isn't the drive to squeeze the lowest time possible out of the track; I would imagine it is to avoid taking excessive risks with their bikes.

And time to say goodbye, with Camilo and Cristi, Will and Norm, and Karlitos.

PD: Here's a cutout from an interview that appeared the following week in a local newspaper, El Lider.

Tweaking details on his bike and going over the straights and curves of the San Juan area track, Carlos Traub, current national champion of the 400 cc Promocional category, tells us: "I have been working on the bike in order to continue my pursuit of the category leader (Jorge Berríos), because I hope to beat him today".

Nonetheless he confessed that his goal of becoming champion once more in 2007 was not going to be easy, since "I have a lesser bike, compared to those of my direct rivals, since its engine is completely stock. They have the advantage in the straights, but I catch up in the curves, where I can put my full skill to use."

The "sporting son" of Freddy Valderrama pointed out that he enters into a state of extreme concentration as the day of the race grows near. "I take the time to go over the track and analyze braking points, so as not to overshoot. I think there has to be a union between pilot and bike in order to win a race. Both must become one," commented this lover of speed on two wheels.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

lot's of picture! very nice

1:37 PM  
Blogger Anna said...

I really wanna go to Chile now and ride around-came across your blog from google images. I was looking for caved in mines.

2:58 PM  
Blogger hilslamer said...

Very inspring.

1:57 AM  

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