The holiday started early Thursday morning with us getting ready and packing the car. We were off and up the freeway before I had really woken up and it was breakfast time. We stopped quickly at Tailem Bend for breakfast and then continued through to Kaniva for lunch. We were all very sick of the drive by then but still had a few hours to go. We drove on through Horsham and Ararat before making it to Balarat. We normally stay in Balarat to break the trip up.
We checked into the motel we always stay at and headed straight down to the pool. The hotel has a huge indoor rec centre with an indoor pool, sauna, tennis court, gym and ping pong table. I whooped my sister at ping pong. We swam and played tennis for a few hours before hitting the restaurant. I was starving and ended up eating two chicken parmigiana's. After tea the girl and I hit the poker machines. I was unlucky and lost my ten dollars but the girl won 50 which was cool. We were stuffed from the day and swimming and eating so we all got an early night.
It was another early morning and a quick bite to eat in the motel restaurant before heading off to Melbourne and down to Phillip Island. Its a long drive but we caught some good scenery in Melbourne and made it over the West Gate Bridge and through the tunnel pretty quickly.
It was pretty warm Friday and by the time we got to the Island and then to the track it was late after noon and the sun had bite. We just stopped off in time to see the last V8 Supercar practice session for the day. The flies were absolutely shocking and were swarming us. We only watched the V8 from outside the fence for about 20 minutes before heading into the main town of Cowes to find our accommodation.
Instead of booking hotel rooms like we normally do we rented a house because there was five of us and it was going to be cheaper. The house we got was a brand new, two story place that was really nice. We unpacked, settled in and had a few beers. We decided on our usual Italian place for tea and walked down the main street to the restaurant. The food, as always was incredible. I have eaten a lot of food in my short 21 years but I have to say that Isola De Capri is the best Italian resturaunt I have eaten at. After our huge day of driving and our huge meal accompanied by quite a few beers we all hit bed pretty early.
Saturday was another early day with us up and at the race track by 6:30am. Even though we were very early we were still about 20 cars back from the gate. The way the Phillip Island Track works is on the main straight there are grand stands but for the rest everyone just backs their cars up to the fence. You have to be there early otherwise you don't get a good spot. From the place where we normally park/sit you can see about two thirds of the track so its pretty good.
It was hot Saturday, I mean hot. We were in the full sun all day and even though it was only about 30 degrees it was so so hot. I put sunscreen on about 4 times and managed to not get burnt at all. The race line up was V8 Supercars, Formula fords (open wheelers), Fujitsu V8's (the second tier V8's), V8 utes and Classic Touring cars. The qualifying sessions were pretty exciting and the first few races were even better. In between races in the morning the girl and I headed over to the main straight where all the tents and merchandise stands were and looked around. There was so many incredible cars, displays and awesome merchandise trucks that we got a bit lost. The girl bought some things and I bought some flags because we were flagless. It was a great day of racing and it ended perfectly with Garth Tander winning the first race. We were all happy because a Holden won.
After a huge day in the sun we drove back to the house for showers and more beer before heading out for tea. Our resturant for the night was the Phillip Island RSL. It is a huge place and probably one of the largest RSL's in Victoria. We played some pokies and had a delicious meal. On our way home we stopped off at a place called Grumpy's to play our annual game of mini golf. I won in the end and there were a few hilarious moments as my mum struggled with a few of the holes. After golf at Grumpy's it was back to the house and sleep.
Sunday was an even earlier morning. We were at the track by 6am but walked right up the front and jumped in the back of some blokes ute. He drove us down to where we were the day before and we jumped out and marked our territory with chairs and junk. We got some shade which proved to be a life saver and made the day so much better. We were joined by a few different people who had sat next to us the day before which was great because they were all very funny. Two of the old blokes got very intoxicated and were just about legless by the e were still way back in the line of cars so the old man and Ind of the day. It was another great day of racing. There were a few smashes in front of us and plenty of slipping and sliding by the V8's and the utes. The championship was to be decided at Phillip Island and we were all hoping Holden's Garth Tander would win and we had to wait until the last lap of the last race. In the last few laps Fords Jaime Wincup passed Tander and had to pass Holden's Todd Kelly to win the championship but after a few tries could not make the pass. In the mean time Craig Lowndes was trying to pass Tander which also would have lost Tander the championship. It was really intense and any mistakes would have lost the championship for Tander. Thank god it all fell into place and Tander and Holden won the race, the round and the championship.
There was a record crowd at the track so it took ages before we could leave. We hung around and had a few beers and spoke to the people we had sat with all day. We waited about an hour before driving out and heading back to the house. We showered, drank and then headed back to our little Italian restaurant for another night of great food. After dinner we stopped to get Gelati and bumped into a couple who had been at the track with us which was weird but funny. We were all a bit tired, a bit drunk and a bit sunburnt so we walked back to he house and hit the hay.
The worst thing about traveling to Phillip Island is the drive back. Getting there isn't so bad because we always break it up with stops in Balarat and Melbourne but on the way back its one long drive. We left early and drove and drove and drove. After 12 hours of driving we were back in Adelaide. We broke the drive up by stopping in Horsham to have lunch in a pub on the main street and then coffee's in Tailem Bend. It was an ok drive but by the end of it we were all very sick of being in a car and we all had very flat asses.
I have always loved going to the Island. Its a beautiful place and the motor racing is always great because it is such an incredible track. I think we have already started to plan our trip for next year which I cant wait for. Woot, go Holden!