A COMPLETE NEWCOMERS VIEW AS HE JOINS PHASE ONE YAMAHA TO CONTEST THE WORLD ENDURANCE CHAMPIONSHIP - AND THE TEAM COME THIRD!
THE SITE NOW CONTINUES TO TELL THE STORY OF THE FOLLOWING YEARS.
This is not the Phase One Endurance website
, it is just the story telling what it was like to join a World Championship contending team as a complete newbie with zero experience! I joined the team in April 2006 and the picture below was taken in September after we had come 3rd in the Endurance World Championship. My part was small but I was well chuffed that we did so well - it was a fantastic six months! In my second year the team had a lot of bad luck with technical problems and finished 6th. In 2008 there were no serious technical problems all year but we had serious crashes in 3 races. Fight backs into the minor points positions at Le Mans and Qatar, plus good results at Suzuka, Oschersleben and the Bol d'Or saw us finish in 8th position. In 2009 teething problems with the new cross-plane crank bike cost us any points in the 2 big races but a superb 2nd place in Qatar hauled us back up to 7th by the end of the year. In 2010 the team only contested road racing at the NW200 and TT plus Endurance 4 Fun at Spa and several classic endurance races with the P&M Kawasakis. Since then the team has turned into the most successful team in Classic Endurance racing winning the championship, the classic Bol d'Or and the South African Classic Series but I have had little to do with any of that, concentrating instead on the EWC with other teams.
Click here to link to a great TV report on Phase One which gives a very good overview of the team.
This site is about a newcomers perspective so if you want to find out more about the series, tracks, riders, results etc please go to www.fim-live.com. If you want to find out what it's like to dive straight in at the deep end and do something completely different then please read on and explore the site. Be careful though - you may be tempted to give it a go yourself and end up spending lots of money. I accept no responsibility if that happens!
SCROLL DOWN FOR THE LATEST NEWS.
How it started
I'm hopeless for reading my Performance Bikes magazine - I just stick it in the car glove box and read bits of it in traffic jams. It's not the fastest way of using bikes to beat the jams, but it is the warmest! Anyway, I normally get to read it ages after it's been delivered so I was kicking myself when I saw that the Phase One World Endurance Road Racing team were looking for pit crew volunteers for the coming season. Not only that but Phase One are based just down the road from me in Bridgwater - the thought of filling my evenings working on some cutting edge racing bikes instead of sitting in my little flat was very appealing even without the prospect of some great weekends out at the races! The more I thought about it the better an idea it seemed - but it was already past the date for the Phase One open day where the team would show potential recruits what they could expect......
Obviously I didn't let a trivial matter like that stop me or you wouldn't be reading this! Use the menu system at the top of the page to see how I got into the team and to follow my progress from gash hand to .... Well, who can say where it will all end? According to Russell Benney (Team Manager) we would all be World Champions by September! It didn't quite turn out like that but it was close enough to get me into it for a second year and enough fun to go for a third, then a fourth and now entering my eleventh year!
Phase One is still racing and I may be involved in some way from time to time but for 2016 it is likely that my only direct involvement will be the trail riding week in the Pyrenees and, of course, the christmas party.
Click here to link to a video of one of our pitstops in the race at Oschersleben in 2008.
Please note - this website is not intended to give an expert view of the Endurance World Championship - it is just my learners view of the small part of it that I am involved with. Even in Phase One there is masses of stuff going on that I never mention simply because I am not involved in it, even though most of it is far more important than anything I do! If you are the type of person who lives and breathes Endurance then this site is probably not for you as the target audience is 100% people who are intersted to see what I am up to and who mostly have only marginal interest in motorcycles or those who are thinking of getting involved as I did - hence it's very basic aproach! However, I know from the emails I recieve that many of you die-hards enjoy it as well and of course you are all most welcome and all constructive feedback is appreciated so long as you appreciate that I will never post any of the really interesting stuff I am doing that other top teams would love to know about!
Damian Rowley, you are a bad person, but very funny! When the revolution comes we will probably shoot you last but until then I guess I'll just have to rely on experience and guile to keep you in your place!
That Phase One girl doesn't look as happy as the others - hope it's nothing to do with where Damian's hand is!
This is not an official MoD website and the content does not reflect the views or policies of the MoD, the RAF, BAE Systems, or even Phase One, just me. Racing motorcycles can be dangerous but they do not form any part of the UK military deterrent or the Defence Industrial Strategy. Everything in here is my copyright unless otherwise stated or it's something about someone in the team that they don't like in which case it was done by an Ex-SAS bloke I know who will be back from body-guarding in Basra next week and happy to discuss it in the alley behind the Prizefighters Arms in Bristol Docks. All manufacturers logos and trademarks are acknowledged, particularly the ones that show a bit of decent design skill. I'm rather partial to the Scottoiler one myself. The site is censored and welcomes censorship requests from anyone who's paying money that helps make the whole experience possible. I would censor all the bits where something I made broke, but I can't afford it! Roy is never really unhappy, it's just something wrong with my Canon camera that makes him look that way. It also makes Chubby look a little overweight and that's not my fault either. I accept no responsibility for financial liability incurred by anyone who thinks this looks so good he wants to have a go. All reference to the male gender (he, his, him, etc) shall be taken to mean he/she, his/hers, him/her, etc, as appropriate, except where it clearly refers to an image of a transvestite or transsexual in which case you can take it to mean anything you like. The previous sentence should not be taken as an indication that there might or might not be any such people involved in WEC or that anyone would care if there were. All images of scantily clad persons are on the site are there purely to inform what it was like and you won't see anything that wasn't on show in broad public daylight. This is entirely the fault of the site fan who described the site as the only true historical record of what it's really like to be in the WEC. I did not go to bed with them, buy them a drink, slip them a business card or even look lustfully at their chests or wink. The fact that Damian R is in more of my photos than all the other riders put together should not be taken to mean that we have a special relationship. Any suggestion that anyone or any company has paid me anything or given me any goods in exchange for preferential coverage on the site is a scurrilous lie. Unfortunately.
Page updated on 19 February 2016
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