Friday, September 29, 2006

MotoGP: Those flyaway races don't come cheap!

Rizla Suzuki have posted some fascinating facts on their website about the costs and equipment needed for the last 3 flyaway races in Malaysia, Australia and Japan.
For instance, the flights for each team member, to transport them from the team's UK base, to Malaysia, then Australia, then Japan, and finally back to the UK, cost 4,330 Euros per person. That's around 2,900 Pounds Sterling or 5,500 US Dollars. And there are more than 20 team members, pushing the bill well over £60,000 or $100,000 on flights alone.
Admittedly, that is great value for money compared to the ludicrous sums spent by Boremula One car racing teams to put on a boring, processional race, but it's a shedload of cash.
These flights added up to 48.35 hours flying time per person. (Hey, isn't the same time as a Formula One race lasts? Certainly feels like it!)
Suzuki also reveal that they bring 8 sets of bodywork and crash repair parts (handlebars, footrests and the other stuff that tends to break off when somebody lays the bike down.)
Only 8 sets? You can see why Suzuki never signed Ruben Xaus, he'd work through at least 8 sets of bodywork in Friday practice alone!
Apparently they even had to bring tools and materials to repair the freight boxes that all of the team's equipment is stored in, since they have to repair boxes that have been trashed by all of the freight handlers along the way.
It's an incredible logistical exercise, but I'm sure the team would say that Chris Vermeulen's brilliant podium at Philip Island made it all worthwhile.

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