Wednesday, February 18, 2015

2015 R1 Release at Sydney Motorsport Park

Yamaha has released the new R1 to the worlds media at Eastern Creek or Sydney Motorsport Park as it is now called. The Aussie dealers all had training on the new R1 today. Check out those sexy head lights. This bad boy has everything and more for a sports bike, straight from MotoGP.

You don't know the power of the darkside...........

Sydney Motorsport Park
Images kindly borrowed blatantly stolen from Yamaha Australias facebook page. You can check them out here. YAMAHA facebook.

I want one of these sexy bitches.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

This is pure inspiration

Alan Kempster is the pure meaning of inspiration. Watch this and I defy you not to be moved by this story.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Scooterbob visits Sydney Harbour

This post just happens to be Bob's 900th post and it also just happens to be my 200th post. That is some achievement, 900 is a huge number of posts and I'm happy to be here as a part of that. Enough on that for now and on with what we are here for.
Warning - This is going to be an extremely photo & video heavy post.

For Scooterbobs last trip out  I decided that I would offset his first trip which saw him visit some of our natural wonders with a trip to see some of our man made wonders. What better place to visit than Sydney Harbour which holds two of our national icons in the one location. So today we ride around the harbour and there's something very special in here for you all, more on that later.

I know Bob liked Vancouver harbour and thought it was pretty special. So I thought a visit to Sydney harbour would be fitting, I know Bob would have liked it. I believe our harbour is pretty special too, whether by day or night the Sydney Harbour bridge and Opera House are spectacular to behold in person and millions of people from all around the world visit these icons every year. I live here and I'm still impressed every time I get a chance to see these things up close and personal. I hope everyone enjoys these photo's as much as I did taking them.

I got up early to ride into the city to avoid as much traffic as possible and so I could get in some good photo's without too many people blocking the shots. I succeeded on both counts. First stop was underneath the Harbour bridge on the northern side or Kirribilli as it's known as, looking back towards the city.

 This is a very popular location for photo's as you can see the front of the opera house and the city in the back ground. When you are in front of the opera house, the thing is so big you can really get a good photo of it. Just nearby is Luna park which is a fun spot to take the kids to enjoy all sorts of rides.

Whilst I was here two lovely young ladies were jogging by and laughingly asked was SB one of those 'travelling gnomes or something'. When I told them the story they were captivated by it.

The security guard that was at his post under the bridge also was asking me a million questions about SB. I tell you he is pretty popular. So it was then off to McMahons Point for another lookout point over the harbour. Again spectacular even though the photo's this early were into the sun.

Scooterbob at McMahons Point

Soon I headed back around over the harbour bridge again and headed into the Rocks. The Rocks is one of the oldest parts of the city. It was established not long after the colony's formation in 1788. Most of the buildings were built out of sandstone rock, hence the name the rocks. Some of the streets still have cobblestone streets and you could be forgiven for thinking you have just walked into a time warp back to the early 1800's.

The park under the southern pylon of the bridge also contains the remnants of 2 guns battery's that were installed in 1819. There were 5 forty two pounds canons on the upper battery and 15 thirty two pound canons on the lower battery mounted on circular tracks so that they could be turned up to 180°.

32 pound canon

42 pound canon

Modern Art

The rocks is a popular tourist area with modern contemporary arts mixed in with historic buildings, the Sydney theatre is in the rocks also with famous restaurants, bars and pubs. The rocks is home to Sydney's oldest pub, the Lord Nelson Hotel. They even brew their own beer. I recommend the 3 sheets pale ale, it's a good drop.

Overlooking the harbour bridge to the north is Observatory hill. This is the home of Sydney Observatory, which is both now a museum and a working observatory. It holds a 40 cm modern schmidt-cassegrain telescope and a historic 29 cm refractor telescope built in 1874, the oldest telescope in Australia in regular use. The views from the rotunda are superb and scooterbob agreed.

SB checking out the view to North Sydney

We mosed on down into the rocks area where the streets become a little more cosy and you can see the old stone work and cobblestone streets. Some of the alley ways are very small and a tight squeeze when there's a crowd. The rocks attracts a weekend market with people selling all sorts of clothes, trinkets, art and food of all types. Try the gozleme here at Dans cafe they are the best I've had anywhere, he also does the best coffee. The outdoor area of the lowenbrau is also a favourite spot especially on a busy night.

The Rocks Markets

Lowenbrau at the rocks

I was getting a little peckish and was in desperate need for a coffee as I had left before even the roosters were up, so we stopped and sat outside to take in the views. I'd ordered a strawberry danish and cappuccino, which came with a complimentary Belgian chocolate. Beautiful.

With my coffee hit out of the way it was time to head around through the city and show scooterbob the main attraction of the harbour, you guessed it the Opera House. One of the most iconic buildings of the 20th century. Passing by circular quay there was a large cruise ship docked in the harbour. These ships come and go just about every second day here.

One of the good things about the city is that they have free parking for motorcycles which made it easy for me to get around and find a parking spot, that combined with the now legal lane filtering made for a good day out in the city.

Here is the video of my tour of the city and harbour where scooterbob makes a surprising appearance. I tell you he has a devilish streak in him. Scooterbob even gets into the action, with him tearing up the streets of Sydney and showing us what he's made of, keep your eye open for that one.

Scooterbob, meet the Sydney Opera House. Yep this building is absolutely amazing. It was designed by danish architect Jorn Utzon. Construction started in 1959 and it was finally finished in 1973(the same year I was born) at a staggering cost back then of $103 million. If that was built today it would probably cost 10 times that amount. It's even more impressive when you are up close to it. The tiles on the sails are very smooth to the touch, like glass.

Looking back at the city

Scooterbob taking in the views.

In June Sydney has the vivid festival which is basically a festival of music and light. They put on a brilliant light show that lasts for nearly an hour by projecting images onto the sails of the opera house. If your ever in Sydney in June you need to get down there at night and check it out. Magic stuff. Here's a picture I took at last years Vivid festival.

I must thank Sonja, David for the chance to host scooterbob. It has been an honour and a pleasure to show him around my neck of the woods and I can't wait to see what adventures that the other bloggers have in store  for him. I'd also like to hope that Yvonne and the kids will have some comfort in seeing what scooterbob has been up to on his adventures. This post is dedicated to the memory of Bob Leong.

It's time now that scooterbob moved on to his next stop on his world tour - the land of the long white cloud, New Zealand. I'm sure he's going to have a great time over there. He was packed away in his little black travel case with some extra bubble wrap and is now winging his way to NZ.

Fare thee well little scooterbob. Godspeed.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Thongs not Crocs

I know Bobscoot was fond of his pink Croc's, I can't say that you'll see me in a pair of those anytime soon, but here is the aussie equivalent to the Croc, they are not croc's as such, they're called thongs and are great in the summer time.


Friday, February 6, 2015

Gotcha on camera

Normally I would not like to be captured on camera by secret means, which is exactly what happened last weekend. Luckily it wasn't a speed camera but a motorcycle photographer enthusiast in the Royal National park. Yep he snapped me as I rode past. I can't say I remember seeing him but it looks like he would have been pretty obvious.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

SMP here we come!

With last November's attempt at riding on slicks at Phillip Island failed, you can read about that here and those tyres have not been used at all so we had to come up with plan B. Well it looks like plan B has arrived and we have booked in for a SMP track day on the 2nd march. SMP stands for Sydney Motorsport Park just in case you didn't know and hopefully this time we will get to use those slicks this time, barring it raining on the day.

And we can go bloody fast and the police can't do anything......

Bored as blog challenge

Sonja posted up her officially bored blog challenge. Show us 3 pictures involving planes, bridges and barns with your bike in them.

Here are my three pics. Not exactly what she was after but the closest I can come up with.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Scooterbob visits the Hunter Valley

My good friend Bushpig joined in on scooterbobs adventure on Sundays ride. He was itching for a ride out and we decided to head up to some of our favourite roads and some roads that we haven't visited for a long time. I had the idea that for today's ride we would ride up through the Old Pacific Hwy on the northern outskirts of Sydney which is a notorious motorcycling road, and then after that continue on into the little hamlet of Wollombi for lunch at the pub then followed up by crossing the lower hunter valley and back down the Putty Rd(aka the putty motogp track - another favourite ride of mine with lots of twisties).

As we headed out through Castlehill we encounter fairly heavy traffic early on a sunday morning. Must be all the mums and dads going to church. Where else can all this traffic be going so early on a sunday? We were going to go up through Galston gorge but changed that idea at the last minute and headed up further north through to Berowra waters and across the ferry crossing. We just arrived as the ferry left for the other side. Plenty of time to show SB the sites. SB wanted to sit perched up high and look around the bay. He also decided he wanted a ride on Bushpigs trumpy.

Super Scooterbob

SB rides the trumpy

Crossing the ferry and heading up towards the old road now, I was feeling like a nice coffee. There is a new cafe that has opened up and I thought we would try it out as they also had some great views of the river. They weren't busy as we pulled up near the Hawksbury river bridge. We ordered two cappuccinos and then sat down to take in the views. 20 minutes went by and still no coffees. We went back and ours was next. Well the coffee was ok, but I'm sorry but over 20 minutes for 2 coffee's when your not really busy is unacceptable to me. I won't be coming back here again. Such poor shit service.

Whilst we enjoyed our coffee's SB checked out the views of the River and watched a myriad of motorcycles passing by on the bridge.
SB was impressed with the views

After downing our coffee's we rode up the twisty bit of the Old Pacific Hwy past the road warriors cafe, no we didn't stop in today but there was a lot of bikes in there. We turned off onto Peats Ridge road and headed out into the lower hunter valley.

The road along here is very scenic all the way along, but can be pretty rough in patches but there is also small amounts of new road so its a bit of a mixed bag. Beautiful green countryside, creek crossings and lemming corner. It was named Lemming corner by Cessnock city council in 2004 because there were 31 motorcycle crashes on it. It was along here SB told me he wanted to go a bit faster, I said "No scooterbob we are doing the speed limit", then he said "come on I'm just a slow little scooter you know". Not wanting to disappoint him, scooterbob un-officially became the fastest wooden scooter in Australia by joining the +200 club, and no we weren't practicing to become lemmings.

Lemming Corner courtesy google maps

We stopped in at the Wollombi tavern for lunch. Both of us hadn't been up here for lunch in a few years. We both ordered a steak sandwich and chips. What came out was probably the worst pub meal I've ever had. For the princely sum of $13 you got yourself 2 pieces of toasted bread with a small piece of steak slapped between, no lettuce, no tomato, no beetroot and with a hand full of over cooked chips. I should have taken a photo to show you how bad it really was. And we were only an hour out of Sydney. Bushpig got us a mid strength beer to wash it down with also over priced at more than $6 per beer. Another place with poor/expensive service. That's 2 from 2 today and another place we won't be back again. Beer was nice though.

Wollombi Tavern

After our very ordinary lunch we packed scooterbob away for the trip up through the lower hunter and across to the top end of the Putty road. This area is a very large wine growing region of New South Wales and attracts thousands of visitors every year. You can stop at many different cellar doors here and there is even a couple of brewery's at Pokolbin.

No time for that today as SB was itching to get stuck into the 10 mile of canyons at the top end of the putty road. Yeah he really enjoyed that, I think he's getting a taste for riding the twisties. I think he's going to enjoy the coromandel peninsula.

Yet another fun day out showing scooterbob the sites of this big wide land of ours. It will soon be time for scooterbob to continue his journey around the world and head off to New Zealand to continue his down under tour before heading back to the northern hemisphere. Maybe one more trip out.

Stay tuned for more amazing adventures of scooterbob as he slays the streets of Sydney.....