Events like the Classic Isle of Man TT and the Spa Classics go from strength to strength each year gaining popularity.
This year sees a new kid on the block with the running of the first World GP Bike Legends meeting in Jerez de la Frontera, Andalucia, Spain from the 19th to the 21st June. This looks like being an epic event for a number reasons including:
- The quality of the riders attending including numerous World Champions like Wayne Gardener, Kevin Schwantz, Freddie Spencer, Christian Sarron, Loris Capirossi, Angel Nieto, Carlos Lavado, Phil Read, to name just a few. Over 30 world titles between them!
- The opportunity to see World Champions racing again on classic 2-stroke bikes – there will be 14 races held over the weekend with qualifying on the Saturday and free practice sessions on the Friday
- A great range of supporting entertainment including live music, classic bike displays, comedy entertainment, trials show and trade village. The live music come from Bonnie Tyler, James Toseland (Double World Superbike Champions and MotoGp rider) and several world famous tribute bands including QueenMania and The ZZ Tops who will be rocking out on stage with numerous hits from the iconic 70s, 80s and 90s.
- The chance to get up close to the biking heroes of the past with an informal open-paddock policy giving fans unrivalled access to the riders and their iconic machinery.
- The chance to enjoy all of this epic motorcycling at an epic venue. Jerez is a great choice of venue, a circuit which can easily handle 250,000 fanatical bike fans over a weekend in the Southern European Climate on a great track with great viewing opportunities.
- The weather! Unlike Spa and the Isle of Man fans should only need one attire – shorts and T- Shirt with plenty sun location and a hat or parasol! It is almost guaranteed to be hot and sunny!
The organisers are keen to stress that this is a weekend where competition is at the heart, the World GP Bike Legends is the first event to bring the legendary riders from the sport’s golden era together again to go elbow-to-elbow against one another on the 2-stroke bikes they rode to World Championships.
Riders will take to the Jerez circuit to compete in three headline classes – 125cc, 250cc and 500cc.
Those that have attended a bike GP race in Spain will know just how fanatical the Spanish are about their bike racing – inside and outside of the circuit gates. Hopefully the fanatical Spanish fans will take to this event and ensure the fun goes on for 24 hours each day! Bring ear plugs!
Having attended both the Spa Classics and the TT, and GP bike racing and MotoGP from the era of Barry Sheene to Marc Marquez I personally cannot wait to get there.
Jerez is a great place to ride too, in warm sunshine on great uncrowded roads! A great excuse for a motorcycling experience! And don't forget the World Superbikes in Portimao take place not long after - good idea for a tour!
Bring it on! Hopefully the first of many!
And while in Jerez don't forget to take in the many other great experiences on offer, try the local sherries (I'd go for a cold refreshing fino this time of year!) take in a bodega tour or wtach a andalcian horse show.