May I just start by saying, it was the best thing I have ever done (bike-wise ) In 3 days on the circuit I have learned more than in a year of riding on the road.
It was an exclusive, open pit lane event. No groups, no timed sessions. Just 30 riders and unlimited access to the circuit. Most of the time, there were only 3-7 riders on the track. It meant no pressure and plenty of room. To me it’s the definition of a quality track time.
Focus Events did an amazing job organising the event. It was safe but still laid back and rider-friendly, without unnecessary limits and over-the-top health&safety regulations. We had a MotoGP photographer, who took some spectacular shots, and the World Champion, Andrew Pitt, as a coach. He spent a lot of time taking me out on the track as well as setting up a course in the car park for my little mx play.
I also can’t praise Bahnstormer BMW enough for taking care of me. All I did was bought the bike. They track-prepped it for me here in the UK, and then prepared it for me in Almeria. All I had to do is show up and ride my bike. Isn’t that everyone’s dream?
As for the costs, the event I took part in was £740. The price included 3 nights accommodation with breakfast, return transport for my bike and kit and 3 days on the race circuit. Additional costs were: transport (I drove, but most people fly), lunches and dinners (cheap), tyres and petrol (available on the circuit). And pictures of course :) Plus if you decide to play in the gravel, like JoJo did, then fixing the bike might be quite pricey ;) Considering a track day at a premium UK circuit, like Silverstone, can be up yo £200 for a day, and the weather is never certain, I think a hot and sunny European track event is money well spent! The hassle of traveling to the circuit and setting up in the pits is pretty much the same for types of track days, but the amount of quality track time you get on a European event makes UK track days pale in comparison.
Last but not the least, the people. What a lovely bunch!! Not a single racer-wannabe prick. Some were very fast, some not so much, but all of them were absolutely delightful both in the pits and on the track. The overtakes were gentle and even the fastest riders were not intimidating at all. Being completely out of my comfort zone, it meant the world to me. I still remember the idiot who stood me up in a tight corner at wet Silverstone (my first track day).. But there was none of that at Almeria. Not one rider complained about me being dangerously slow on the first day, they all patiently put up with my slow pace, and they ALL came to compliment me on the third day, when I finally got a little faster. I honestly can’t imagine more friendly, encouraging and understanding environment to learn. If you want to learn and not end up discouraged or scared, THIS is the way to do it! It’s safe to say, I am HOOKED!