year's MotoGP event at Donnington has been captured
by Dave and Wes Booth, 's
recently appointed "Roving Reporters" - here
is their report, including a rather special moment when
the collection made by readers of The Site was presented
to the UK's premier 250GP rider, Chaz Davies.
GP250 star Chaz Davies and our
My intention was the same as previous years, to
find some accommodation in Leicester for the whole of
the Thursday to Sunday event., but it was not possible
this year, for I had invited my friend Gottfreid (Jeff)
and his wife over from East Germany to stay with us
for a week. The stay would include Jeff traveling to
Donnington along with Wes and myself for the 2004 MotoGP.
I met Jeff last year at the Czech GP in Brno and we
struck up an amicable friendship. This friendship has
carried over via Email, and thus, I find myself playing
host to Jeff and Martina this last week.
arrived at the circuit on Thursday for the Day of Champions
at around 11.30am. My sole intention was to find Roby
Rolfo in a relaxed mood and get him to autograph my
Fortuna petrol tank. I am not interested in the plethora
of trade stands and exhibitions that are in force at
the event which is why we aimed to arrive just before
weeks prior to the Donnington GP I instigated a movement
to raise some monies to help Chaz Davies get over the
theft of his leather racing suits. Thanks to the input
of Andy, this had exceeded all my expectations, and
by the time of the Day of Champions, the fund total
was standing at £245.00. My aim now was two fold,
1). to meet with Roby Rolfo. 2). to meet up with Chaz
and present him with the NSR-WORLD.COM collection.
was fortunate enough to be able to bring my car into
the infield part of the circuit and I parked up right
next to the tunnel entrance to the paddock. Wes and
I wore our Fortuna shirts and I had brought my petrol
tank in a sports hold-all. We made our way through
the bustle of people who were thronging into the paddock
area. I was grabbed from behind by a strong hand and
I turned around to face a guy who recognised me from
last years' MotoGP at Brno. At Brno we were seated
near to each other and he recognised Wes and I by
our shirts. We chatted a while and he told me that
he is returning again this year, but this time is
bringing his wife and daughter along as well. Isn’t
it strange, by just going along to a foreign GP I
have met and befriended so many people.
down to business! Roby and Tony Elias were housed
in the tented area of the paddock and I poked
my face through the entrance flap. The mechanics
were preparing both Tony’s and Roby’s bikes
and gave me a menacing stare. I broke the ice
by using the little bit of Italian that I can
speak and asked of Roby’s whereabouts. He was
in the telemetry truck, and came over to see
Wes and I. We chatted for a short while and
I asked him to put his signature onto my tank,
he did this without hesitation but this action
brought an excitable crowd, who were pressing
themselves nearer and nearer. A Moto GP official
photographer was present and took a snap of
Roby inscribing my tank.
the time we arrived back home at 9.30pm this photo was
on Roby’s web site; sadly it has now gone and been replaced
by a few more interesting images!
had promised me one of the latest Fortuna
team shirts when we spoke whilst at LeMans.
The shirt was in his motor home and he informed
me that he was ready to join in a Honda
meeting so I should return around 3.30pm
and he would do his best to provide us with
this precious gift.
set off back to the car with my autographed
tank. Along the way I bumped into Leon Haslam,
Craig Jones and Cal Crutchlow. I also spoke
with Mike Scott the controversial journalist
who writes for MCN. We slipped into our
NSR-WORLD "staff" shirts and rejoined
the madding crowd.
was bombing around on his scooter and I
flagged him down to ask about the time for
my presentation of the monies. He reluctantly
explained to me that he would have to delay
our rendezvous until later in the day. He
was in great demand from his sponsors and
suppliers and would ask his dad to meet
up with us at the team area where a suitable
time could be arranged.
Day of Champions is a very exciting event,
if you are really lucky you are able to
meet up with your idols. I used my free
time to explore the two stroke garages.
came in very handy when we happened upon
the Bravo garage, for Jeff lives in the
same village as Steve Jenkner and he immediately
plunged into a torrid German conversation
with the 125 rider.
were also introduced to Georg Frohlich
the Red Bull ADAC rider, on looks alone
you would not expect this lad to be able
to ride a bike let alone race in GPs,
he looks positively infantile!
were allowed access into the Carrera area
and I desperately wanted to talk with
Lucio Checanello. “He no here today” I
was told, “bugger!”
Burns came pop, pop, popping by on his scooter, I asked
him to autograph a stunning picture of him that I had
previously taken. We talked of the new direction of
team WCM and the V6 engine that was in the pipeline.
left Chris sat astride his scooter signing autographs,
and when we returned to this area 20 minuets later he
was still in the same position on his scoot scribbling
away. A thousand apologies for creating your dilemma
were ravenous and decided to pop into the paddock restaurant
for a bite to eat. Whilst we were eating Chaz’s mum
passed by and we eagerly asked about our meeting with
him. Wes also explained that he also had some monies
for Chaz, he had been putting a little away each week
from his pocket money and had saved up enough to give
to Chaz towards a signed print of him in action. Chaz’s
pit board logo has the script "CHAZMON" emblazoned
on it and I pulled this logo of a photo that I had of
the board. I used Photoshop to manipulate this image
and I shrunk it to the correct size and printed it out
onto an envelope - this is the envelope with the monies
in, in the photos of me handing over our “dosh”.
filling our bellies we made our
way back over to the Fortuna area.
Robbie came over with the shirt
and I pumped away on his hand (this
was a mega handshake). Wes is very
disappointed with the shirt, ‘cos
it is a large size and fits me (tough
sh*t Wes!), don’t forget, he has
2 Fortuna shirts already.
looked imminent and so we made our
way over to the Germany Aprilia.
Again, Jeff came in handy for all
the pit crew were “Jerries”. The
heavens opened, I had not seen such
a downpour like this before. We
could not have left if we wanted
to, water was sluicing right through
the working areas. The rains lasted
for well over one hour and we huddled
together like sheep in a pen.
Reporter: Dave Booth.
the rain ceased, Chaz came up on his scooter and I was
able to give him the accompanying letter and monies.
Chaz read the letter he was very silent, and I think
he was a little lost for words, but he is very professional
and responded with a firm handshake and a very pleasing
"thank you". Wes offered to Chaz the monies
from him and again Chaz thanked Wes for this sum of
monies. Chaz made his apologises, for he was wanted
elsewhere and had to leave. Both Wes and I felt equally
pleased with what had just unfolded and satisfying warmth
came over me as I reflected on the generosity from the
club that had been put in to make this happen.
hung around for a while and hoped to meet with Valentino
(no chance). I had photographed Wes with Valle previously
and had used photo shop to transform the picture into
a watercolour painting, I wanted Rossi to put a special
signature on this and I could then have it framed for
Wes, ahh well! Perhaps next time. The paddock was inaccessible
down the main thoroughfare due to dire flooding and
no one seemed to be about, we decided to call it a day
and head for home. It took 45 minutes for me to work
out a way to the circuit exit for all the access dirt
roads were under deep waters.
turned up on the Sunday with a bottle of sun cream...
phah! I wouldn't need it! Wes, Jeff, and I sat huddled
under plastic sheeting and umbrellas all day.
events marred this fantastic weekend, first, Robbie
had an unexplained crash and broke his collar bone.
It later transpired that his front wheel axle had broken
and sent him “down the road”. I was in the area where
Chaz had his tumble I was watching him approach Goddards,
he was very late on the breaks and I saw him pass the
rider directly in front of him, I cheered, but then
saw him go down. He was angry with himself with this
incident and his body language showed it.
was a strange day for everyone I spoke to enjoyed the
three races, but in each race there was not a great
deal of overtaking and passing manoeuvres.
I can honestly say yes, I was there, I have the cap
and I really do have the shirt. I wont rant on about
trying to get away from the circuit but what should
have been a 2 hour jaunt home turned into a 5 hour
marathon, thank God for cool beers, aaaaahhhhhh-drown
following letter has been received by Dave thanking
him and the readers of
their efforts in raising money to help Chaz further
his racing career:
David and Wes,
you both very much for all your efforts
raising money to help Chaz in his
Grand Prix career.
is great to know that there are people
out there who are prepared to do something
to stand by this. We are truely very
you are probably aware, the Donnington
GP did not quite go as planned, but
up until the race Chaz was really
going very well and we hope that he
can continue to build on this during
the second half of the season.
could you pass on our thanks to Andrew
Grant and all the Members of the NSR
Forum who helped raise money for Chaz.
It was very much appreciated.
very best wishes to you both.
Sam, and Chaz Davies.
is proud to announce the total fund collected for
Chaz was £260.
to everyone who supported the UK's GP250 star, and
we wish Chaz the best of luck in all his future