City of shopping and MotoGP
Trip Start May 04, 2013
21Trip End Jul 07, 2013
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Our main reason for visiting Florence for the 4th time was to go to the MotoGP at Mugello - or was it to satisfy Kerrie's need for some retail therapy in what she says is her favourite city in the world!
Our apartment in Florence (home for 4 nights) was about 500m from the Duomo - one of the most magnificent structures you will ever see. The ride in was interesting because we were staying in the old part of the city and the cobbled streets and motorbikes are not really a good mix! The apartment was very roomy with a free laundry - a rare addition to any accommodation in Europe.
Friday was Kerrie's shopping day - a day to herself in Florence while Greg and Chris were sent to do a recce of the MotoGP and to purchase the tickets for the following 2 days of racing.
The boys left the apartment at about 9:30 and headed north out of town. The ride to Scarperia where the Mugello track is situated took about 40 minutes. On arrival Greg & Chris parked the bikes right out the front of the entrance, same place for the next three days. They parked next to two young Aussies, husband and wife who had hired Ducati monsters in Cannes, France and had ridden down to Mugello just to watch the Friday practise session as they had to have the bike back asap to go to the Isle of Man. Inside G & C met six more Aussies from Newcastle who had hired two camper vans for one month to go to six bikes races - Superbikes and MotoGP!! That's all they did - and drink beer! They also met one Aussies guy travelling by himself for 12 weeks also attending bikes races arranged by Pole Position. He was less than happy with the service. They spent the rest of the day wandering around the venue checking out the best place to watch the race on Sunday.
Kerrie, meanwhile back in town, had a sleep in and did not leave the apartment till about 10am. First stop was a local hairdresser to attend to the silver streaks that were appearing in her hair. Next was morning tea sitting beside the Duomo.
The next 2 days were spent at the MotoGP. We decided to ride out each day as the weather was good and Greg was getting back in to the riding style required for survival in Italy - pass everything, lane split constantly and get to the front at traffic lights then go like hell when the lights change! It took about 40 minutes each day to get to the track and parking was free and no problem - only about 100m from the entrance gate. We covered the bike each day for several reasons - to keep it dry - just in case, to keep prying eyes off our gear which was locked on the bike and to make it easy to find at the end of each day.
After purchasing the required t-shirts as momentos of the visit and a few extras for gifts, we settled down to watch what we had come for - racing! MotoGp racing is fast and furious. Without a doubt, the crowd had come to see Valentine Rossi.
Unfortunately for the local crowd, Valentino Rossi had a coming together with Alvaro Bautista in the first lap and crashed out. The crowd was devastated - one woman was crying and many packed up and went home even though there was still 23 laps of the race to go. Jorge Lorenzo led the race from start to finish with Marc Marquez and Danny Pedrosa fighting it out for second.
We decided to have dinner in Piazza S. Croce
What a great way to end another memorable stay in Florence