Monday, June 27, 2011

Final catch up on this weekend's N24 Race

GAZOO Racing Team
My work for the 29th Nürburgring 24 Hour Race is now over. My final blog entry has been posted on the Toyota Europe Corporate Blog. It was an amazing experience to be able to go to that legendary circuit to watch the famous 24-hour race and to report on it.

I must, at this point, say a few thank yous. Firstly, to Toyota for giving me a chance to realise a dream I've had all my life as a car fanatic. This weekend, having stayed up for 30+ hour straight over Saturday and Sunday, also happened to be a big tick in my life box - don't ask... I really wanted to give it a shot, but I know now how exhausting it can be!

Alastair catching some Z's
Next, my counterpart at Toyota Motorsport GmbH, Alastair, who took care of us during the entire weekend and helped me arrange the two interviews with Akira Iida and André Lotterer. He was also great at giving us heads up on the team's strategy and activities. Most of all, out chats during the long night helped me stay awake and helped me understand more insight into motrosport in general. (Alastair, if you see this pic, please don't kill me!).

Kawaii GAZOO Ladies
The GAZOO Racing Team has been more than accommodating throughout the weekend. They were always happy to spare some time for a chat. They gave me access to the entire team so I could do my job. Imaii-san even translated the interview with Iida-san for us on the spot. Not to mention the GAZOO Ladies who gave some super kawaii poses when I asked them for a photo after lunch.

Mostly, I learnt something great from the team. I saw them, all night, trying to get the cars back on the track. They didn't have to. They could have just packed up and waited for their plane back home. No, they persevered through thick and thin as a team. They all worked together in harmony, no bickering or shouting, in a garage packed with six cars and two teams. They didn't scream with joy when LFA #87 made its way out after a 10-hour engine replacement, they clapped and applauded diligently for the team and went back to man their stations (not a shred of relaxing).

Kristof going for a big cake
Kristof, my TME colleague, who drove us to and from the track, the hotel, and Belgium. He arranged all our logistics before we left. His constant eagle eye on the happenings of a very confusing weekend was more than helpful to help both of us get through everything and bring the race to our viewers.

I also met some great people from the agency who sorted out every other bit of logistics you can imagine from the food to getting everything there and back again. Paul and John were awesome and they were also fantastic in giving me up to the minute information as the weekend went on! Paul was brilliant with his insight into the track layout and where the best vantage points were.

Finally, our followers on the Twittersphere who kept me going all night when the lounge emptied and I was left on my own to fend off the drowsiness. They sent encouraging words and messages all night and helped me endure: , , , ,

I must also thank Lexus Enthusiast for sharing the event with us, and using my photos!

Here's looking forward to next year!

Me and Morizo

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good picture with "Morizo"! I would love to get one of those Gazoo Racing key lanyards.... but they can't be found on the internet!