COTA – Moto GP comes to Texas
When I first heard that the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) was going to host a Moto GP race, I knew that it was an event I wanted to see. I had heard the track was beautiful and it is not everyday that you get to watch the best riders in the world, up close and in person.
I coaxed Jackie and Rob to join me and ordered tickets as soon as they were available. We purchased grand stand seats and motorcycle parking passes. I also booked the hotel online from the COTA website and got a decent rate of $150 a night at a Marriott Courtyard that was 10 minutes from the track.
We took the long way down to Austin on Thursday morning. We did not leave until 10:30 as we waited for the storms to pass over the metroplex. It was a chilly morning, but we stayed dry for the most part. The highlight of the day was eating at coopers in llano. It is one of my favorite places to eat BBQ. http://www.coopersbbqllano.com
On Friday we got up and headed to the track. It was very nice and for this day the parking was actually right next to the track. We spent the day walking around and watching the Moto3, Moto2 and GP guys practice. We had good seats, but spent most of the day watching from different vantage points. I have to say that the sound at the track is intoxicating. It was a great day of hanging out and enjoying the day.
Saturday came and we knew that today would be a zoo at the track. We rode over via back roads from the hotel and was directed to the motorcycle parking. It was not as close as on Friday, however I was very happy as from doorstep to track took just over 15 minutes and no waiting in lines. However if we had been in a car, the wait was over an hour to park. Just another reason to ride to the track.
It was an awesome day of watching fast bikes and enjoying the atmosphere. The crowd was large but nothing crazy. I do know I spent way to much money on shirts and stuff. It was a great day. Marc Marquez had a big get off in his practice session but was ready to go for the main event. That dude is FAST!
That evening we headed to 6th street to get some dinner and to take in some Austin night life. We ate at the Iron Cactus ( http://www.ironcactus.com/austin-downtown ) and the meal was very tasty. The place was packed but we had a nice meal.
Sunday was race day! Again getting to the track was painless. I will stay at the Marriott again next year. Nice hotel, decent rates, food was good, nice parking and getting to the track was very easy.
The races were great and we got to see why the Spanish riders are so good. They dominated the podiums. The Hondas were dominant all weekend in the GP class. It was a wonderful weekend. The boys from the states did not fare well, but we all knew that Spies was hurt and Hayden has been scuffling on the Ducati since he started there.
Rob and I had to head back to Dallas right after the race. We jumped on the 130 toll and cruised at the assigned speed limit of 85. Yes that is the posted limit. We made quick time until we hit Temple on I35. We changed course went and hour out of our way and made it home by 9:30pm.
It was a fun weekend and I will do it again next year!
Check out all of the pictures from the event here: http://lonestarlobos.smugmug.com/Motorcycles/2013-Road-Trips/Moto-GP-COTA-in-Austin/29065544_KrJPb6#!i=2473447507&k=4Z83JZ4