It’s amazing what a difference a year can make. DirtQuake takes place this weekend and I don’t really care. It used to be my favorite event,
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I mean, it’ll probably be fun this year. Taking place 18 August at Arena Essex, the annual “go fast turn left” festival will feature flat track racing of all sorts, with the highlight events being those that feature bikes inappropriate to the sport. There are also a handful of motorcycling celebrities to be seen. Guy Martin usually turns up on a raked-out chopper; Carl Fogarty is billed as an attendee despite almost killing himself last year on a barely modified Triumph Street Triple.
According to a media release that hit my inbox this morning, Indian Motorcycle will be putting its support behind racers Leah Tokelove, Chris Hatton, Jonathan Falkman, and Lee Kirkpatrick – the four horsemen of the Krazy Horse Race Team. They’ll be riding modified Scouts in the event’s Hooligan races.
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Indian will also be putting riders on one of its famed FTR750 bikes for what it calls the Celebrity Hot Lap Challenge. “Celebrities” so far confirmed are Neil Hodgson (never heard of him), Steve Parrish (have heard of him because he shills for literally every manufacturer), and Jenny Tinmouth (have heard of her, too, but wouldn’t be able to pick her out of a crowd).
I haven’t yet received press releases to this effect, but I’m willing to bet that Harley-Davidson and Triumph have some fun stuff planned, too. But, as I say, I’m not really interested in going.
DirtQuake has moved away from its traditional home in Kings Lynn (ie, the middle of nowhere) to a larger location just outside the M25 (ie, basically London). Having been bought by a television production company before last year’s event, it has become slicker, more corporate, and more expensive. Tickets this year are £20; when I first attended in 2015 they were £10.
I’m concerned the event will have lost its original spirit of dumb people doing dumb things on dumb bikes. I had been planning to attend this year’s event to find out for myself, but with the shindig only a few days away the thought of spending loads of time on the M25 saps me of my will to leave the house. Kings Lynn is actually further away from TMO headquarters than DirtQuake’s new location, but getting to Kings Lynn involved a number of pleasant roads.
So, uh, if anyone attends this year’s DirtQuake please drop me a line and let me know how it went.