This weekend was the last time we were able to practice before next Saturdays race, and to put the cherry on top of the cake practice only lasted until 1 o’clock.
Since it has been a month ago that the track received any form of maintenance, the last practice before the next race is always the worst. It is not only extra strenuous on your body but the chances for a crash is much likelier. Unlike on the race day where the track is nice and wet and “smooth”, this weekend it was rough and the wet dirt has been replaced with soft “tyre grabbing” sand. We call it “tyre grabbing” sand because when you ride through it (especially in the corners) ones front wheel has the tendency to get stuck in the thick sand and then if you are unlucky you hug the ground very hard.
However, the way I look at it is that by practising in the bad track conditions it only prepares you more, and then when you ride on the nice fixed track it is much easier and it boosts your lap time. So it may be very bad but it prepares you for the race day.
Practice was unfortunately cut short due to the maintenance people showing up at 1 o’clock to fix and prep the track for next week. All the riders left after that, however me, my father, my uncle and a few other people stayed behind to help with the watering of the track. We sprayed water on the jumps and corners that they finished fixing to give the soil a bit of stability and harden it. The track will be wet properly again one day before the race as well as during the race day, to give the riders more grip as well as remove the dust that the bikes kick up.
The water that we use to wet the track we get from a nearby river that runs all year long. We pump the water from the river into the the water tanks on the trucks and then we spray it onto the track.
A quite unusual practice day but fun non the less.