At the end of August I rode to Indianapolis for the MotoGP race weekend at the Speedway. This was the fourth year they've hosted the races and the third year that I've ridden up for it. It's about a 650-mile journey; I left around 9:00am Friday morning and arrived around 8:00pm. I met up with my friend Daryl from Cincinnati and 5 other friends from around Michigan. Friday night we visited Skyline Chili, a restaurant specializing in Cincinnati style chili, a sweet concoction (I think I tasted some cinnamon in it) that is traditionally served over spaghetti. That's what I had, served as a five-way (spaghetti, chili, cheddar cheese, onions, and red beans) along with a cheese coney - YUM! Afterward we grabbed some Dirty Helen, a beer brewed just outside of Indy, and headed back to the hotel for an evening of kicking tires and telling lies.
Saturday morning we had breakfast at Le Peep, a great restaurant that Daryl found. We had a good time visiting with the staff and enjoying a wonderful and very filling breakfast. Then, it was off to the track!
A good thing about riding motorcycles to the track is that parking is free in the infield! That saved us quite a bit of scratch and allowed us to park right in the middle of the action.
We wandered around for a while checking out bikes and vendor displays.
We then grabbed a comfy spot in the stands and watched an afternoon of practice and qualifying for the 3 MotoGP classes: 125cc 2-stroke, 600cc 4-stroke, and the 800cc 4-stroke premier class.
Following an excellent dinner at Olive Garden, we headed into downtown Indy for "Bikes on Meridian," a massive gathering of bikes that spans around 16 city blocks.
Once we FINALLY found a place to park, we walked around for a while, visiting with fellow bikers, checking out bikes, and checking out the cool sites of downtown Indy.
Sunday was race day, which we started with another trip to Le Peep. :-) There were three races, one for each of the classes.
9-time world champion Valentino Rossi.
After the races, all of my group headed on to their homes, since they didn't have too far to travel. I enjoyed an afternoon of exploring the area, eating dinner at Jason's Deli, and visiting a Trader Joe's for the first time. What a store that is! I had heard that they're pretty incredible, and that's no joke. I bought several items to bring home but had to keep it limited so it'd all fit on my bike. :-)
A cemetery in a nice, peaceful spot that I encountered while out riding around.
One of the many corn fields I encountered.
Monday I had a good ride home, unpacked, reflected on the good weekend, and got a bit of rest before heading back to work on Tuesday. Can't wait until next year!