The Mothership Connection: Beam me up Adrian.

29 06 2013

Brammo Blog Version 2.0-Number 5 

And So We Land In Ashland.

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Ok, I can not use the phrase “The Mothership Connection” without thinking of the great album by Parliament. George Clinton is totally gonna kick my ass for this:

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and yes, shamefully i added my face into the photo.

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But (if you can manage to erase that image from your head) we move forward.

Deanna and I took a nice driving vacation this summer. Photos will be uploaded here someday when I’m less busy…like 20 years from now.

It was an amazing trip. Through Death Valley and up to Mammoth Lakes. From Mammoth to Yosemite. From Yosemite to Lake Tahoe. And then from Lake Tahoe to Crater Lake. Each stop was just perfect.

Then, after a wonderful stay at the Crater Lake Lodge, we headed home by way of Ashland, Oregon. Now Ashland is a quint little town with the famous Shakespeare Festival every summer. But on a trip of amazing National Parks it was a bit of a question as to why we stopped there.

And the reason was:

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Yes, Ashland is home to Brammo. And Brammo makes the electric motorcycles that is, mostly, the theme of this blog.

And so we had to stop. Brammo Headquarters let loose her siren song and no amount of plugging my ears or tying myself with large ropes to the car seat could keep me from her.

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So Sir Adrian* met us at the front and took Deanna and I on a tour.

*Sir Adrian was knighted in the late 90’s for his excellence in Circus work and for his efforts to rid the Isle of Man of wild Alpacas. He was, for a very short time, considered Britain’s Pied Piper.

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The tour did get off to a slow start as the staff had a bit of fun at Adrian’s expense. Knowing that Adrian always starts his tours showing off the IET manual transmission they put super glue on the top of the model. And in his left front pants pocket. You can actually see him saying, “Jesus, I will fire every last sodding one of you worthless….” softly when he realizes this.

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But after a bit we got going. First stop was the awards cabinet. Or cabinets. The awards are starting to pile up.

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And then off to the work area. I could only take photos of this side as the other side of the large work area is largely for future projects and updates to current projects.

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I’m pretty sure I got to see a few things I shouldn’t have seen. But I really don’t remember as on the way out I was given the “Men in Black treatment”.

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We did get to tour the Battery area and get a nice history. Deanna was impressed and asked more questions than I did. Of course I was still giggling about the super glue gag.

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Battery pouches. It’s kinda like Tang was for the Astronauts. Energy contained in sealed packages.

Ok, it’s nothing like Tang. I just felt like I had to say something here and panicked a bit.

ps…don’t put a straw into and then try and drink from any of these pouches. Adrian will yell at you. Don’t ask how I know this.

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After the battery tour, and Sir Adrian removing all straws and other objects from my pockets, it was off to the Assembly Line.

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Mmmmmm, tasty new Empulse Rs. Had the new bike smell…and taste. And I was yelled at again 😦

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A bird’s eye panorama of the production floor. Don’t ask how I got this photo. I pretty much assume I am never invited back to Brammo…or Ashland…or probably Oregon.

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At one side of the production floor I did spy an Empulse that was a bit different than any I’d seen. A dual sport model? Not really, but it did have big knobby tires and lots of mud all over it. So yes it would work in city and highway and off-road. But not a production version of a dual sport. Just a modded Empulse R.

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IMG_6975I did get to sit on it and flash my “East Side” gang signs for all my homies in Uptown.

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We also snuck upstairs to see the “Classic” bikes outside of Craig Bramscher’s office.

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This is the first Enertia.

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And here is a “production ready” Empulse before Brammo decided to go from a single speed to the 6 speed shifty transmission.

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It was a short but sweet visit. I got to meet a small number of the staff (see below) and they were all great. But at least half the staff was out of the office…more on that a bit later.

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Friday afternoon most of the staff will go for a ride out for lunch. Here is a group, and me, as they are heading out for pizza. 5 electrics and one on a gasser…for shame. 🙂  They asked if I wanted to go, but Deanna and I had a bit of driving to do that day to get to our next stop.

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Our next stop was in wonderful Willows, California. Home of…well I don’t think it is home of anybody famous. But it does have Thunderhill Raceway.

And, by coincidence—honest and I swear—our trip was planned long before the event at Thunderhill was announced–Brammo had their race team down at the track for some racing against gas bikes.

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On the way from Ashland to Willows we passed by Mt. Shasta. Beautiful. Just like on the soda can when I was a kid.

Because it HASTA be SHASTA!

Ah, it will rot both your teeth with it’s sugar and your mind with it’s butching of the English language.

I’m surprised they haven’t already had Arnold Schwarzenegger doing a commercial for them.

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And here is where we stop for the day.

Next is THUNDERHILL.

And then a blog about battery performance in hot weather (we are breaking records left and right here in Albuquerque this summer).

And one on my ride up to Santa Fe for a Classic Motorcycle show. Busy Busy Busy

But for now…

Take care,

Gavin

For more info on Brammo, please visit: www.brammo.com
For more images, photos, discussions and all around Brammo goodness: visit, lurk and maybe join: www.brammoforum.com

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Bonus:

My Brammo swag.

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Cool Parker Racing hat with Brammo logo on sides

and

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Icon/Brammo motorcycle jacket. I sleep in this.

and nothing else….which is even scarier than the Parliament image at the start of this post.

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Brammo Blog : New Computer, New Bike. Same Old Me. Sorry.

29 08 2012

Blog 38: And the Slow Down begins. Today’s blog is mostly a “clip show” rerun. Sorry again.

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So I had the lovely green Enertia Legacy bike for 10 months and 4800 miles of riding. Good Times. Fun Times. But she is now back with Brammo in Ashland (and they are likely thinking, “Jesus, what the heck did he do to this bike?” I did ride her fairly hard and took her off road more than they probably thought I would).

We will do a little remembrance…an “Oscar” show farewell:

(no Yo Yo Ma on single cello, no stark piano playing, not even the great Brother IZ playing Over the Rainbow on ukelele)

This tribute get Miss You by the Stones playing in the background.

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Day one. The first ride.

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Walter White’s house…Breaking Bad tour

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Bike getting muddy. She rode in all weather. Sun, Rain, Snow and from 9 degrees to 104.

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Getting Muddy…mostly me this time.

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Silverton, CO. Where old met new.

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Part of the “Park Where I Want” series. Inside the bar at Ska Brewing, Durango, CO.

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Fake Paris. Las Vegas, NV

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Opening up 17 Mile Drive to Electric Motorcycles. Hopefully more to come.

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Hoover Dam. Dam good times. Thanks E.

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More off-roading at Camp Scoot 2012.

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She was great. I miss her already. But I now have a new bike to learn and enjoy. The new bike will go twice as far, opening up more trips and travels. I plan to do quite a few day trips. Sandia Crest: Madrid and the Mine Shaft Tavern: Tinkertown: A nice ride down along the Rio to Los Lunas when the Cottonwood leaves are turning gold. All trips I couldn’t do on the true city commuter Enertia Legacy.

But the Blog, for a while, will slow down. Probably a post a week. I have been posting 3 to 4 times a week lately as I had 10 months of stories, experiences and photos to share of my time with the Enertia. It will take a while to build up the same amount of photos and experiences on the Enertia Plus (though the Grand Canyon was a GREAT start).

I know it will be tough, but please don’t despair too much when the blog posts decrease to a mere weekly release. If overly depressed, please seek professional care. Or drink heavily. Or both. It’s what I do. 🙂

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I do want to paint the “Boomerangs”. I love the black, but she needs a bit of flash…color…style. So I ask you, my many many readers….ha….I just snorted when I typed that…Which do you prefer?

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Standard: All Black

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Black with green metallic fleck on the Boomerangs.

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Black with blue metallic fleck on the Boomerangs.

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The Green paint would come from this:

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Do I have permission to paint those boomerangs? Well I am following the school of…..1) I don’t not have permission 2) I wasn’t told I couldn’t paint them and 3) it is better to ask forgiveness than permission. And I’m lazy…so who knows when or if it will ever get done.

I do know I need to put a couple of hundred miles on the bike before I can give her a proper review. I thought she would simply be an Enertia with twice the range. But there are quite a few differences between the Enertia and the Plus. Some small, some actually quite big. Give me a couple of weeks and a review will appear.

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Till Next Time…

Gavin

For more info on Brammo, please visit: www.brammo.com
For more images, photos, discussions and all around Brammo goodness: visit, lurk and maybe join: www.brammoforum.com

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***notice i did not give a poll option of “Do it and your a dead man, Gavin. Love Adrian.”

Opps…almost forgot the New Computer part. I bought a new MacBook Pro. Love it. Just wanted to put up a photo here…not sure how it relates to Brammo Blog… 🙂

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Eric Bostrom doing a wheelie on a Brammo Empulse. I hear he did this wheelie while going 60 mph.





Brammo Blog : A Good Day for Ducks. A GREAT day for Brammo.

23 08 2012

Blog 35: And a very fun day for me. A bit sad at the end, but all in all a very nice little trip.

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So Day 3 starts like the other days: Cold, wet and foggy. Every morning I tell myself to go buy some proper gloves (I had only brought my fingerless summer gloves) and every night I forget. Oh well.

So today started out as  “A Good Day for Ducks.”

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Ok, a good day for Canadian Geese…but basically the same thing.

“It gives you wings my feathery ass,” I heard one of them say.

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More early morning Tent Action. Everybody gathering around the Empulse.

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The weather stayed foggy and wet longer on Sunday than any of the other days. This added to the tension. As if there needed to be MORE tension. New rider, new bike, hiccups on both Friday and Saturday; you would think that would be tension enough. Brammo and the Electric Motorcycles were to race at 10:20, but that got scrubbed. Too wet. There was some concern that the race could even get canceled. But, thankfully, that did not happen.

There ended up being two options: 1) Race at 4:20pm after all the other races had finished; or 2) Race at 12:20. We were hoping for the 12:20 time slot as racing at the end of the day would be anticlimactic…most of the crowd would be leaving during the race. Luckily the 12:20 time slot stuck. It seems that the track has a “quiet time” when there are no bikes allowed to race. Something to do with a quiet lunch time? Well it was decided that the Electric Motorcycles are quiet enough to actually have practice time and even race during this “quiet time.” Sweet. Another bonus of electric drive.

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With the delay, the Brammo crew got to spend a little extra time talking to fans before the race.

I was surprised just how much access the fan got to the riders and crew. Paddock Pass for the win.

(A side note. On Saturday I spent about 20 minutes talking to Rebecca, Eric’s fiance. Crazy-nice young woman. So on Sunday when I went over to the Paddock and saw her again I said “Hi” and handed her one of the Brammo brochures of Eric Bostrom. She was, “Oh, sure, I can get Eric to sign that for you.” Me, “Oh everybody gets Eric’s autograph. I was hoping you would sign it.” Sadly, no such luck as she said her handwriting is horrid. Hello, I have the signature of a 3 year old….a 3 year old after drinking 4 Red Bulls.** Maybe next time.)

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Turn 2. Andretti Hairpin.

The sun came out and it ended up being a beautiful day for racing.

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Sitting on the hill by turn 2 with BrammoJenn and BrammoDavid.

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Hill is where we were sitting to view the race. Brammo Tent is the Brammo Tent…duh.

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Just a few bikes. Even more parked on the Paddock side of the track.

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Pre Start. View of hairpin and cars on the hill, bikes on the lot…etc.

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And the race starts…Sorry the images are small…iPhone.

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One warm up lap and the real racing begins.

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Start of race…Barnes, Bostrom and Atlas.

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Ha, I love this as it shows my ADD. Gavin is filming the race a bit. He start to pan over to see the bikes head up the hill…”Oh, birds”… opps, back to racers. Gawd I had the attention span of a gnat on Red Bull**.

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Barnes on the Lightning bike leads at the start, with Eric Bostrom in second. Brammo photo. I was not that close 🙂

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Lean. Brammo Photo.

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At the start Eric is second, Steve Atlas in third. A good start for Team IconBrammo. Brammo photo.

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We got a bit of a scare. Seems that A) the announcers can’t actually see the whole track, so they mostly do their “play by play” from watching the bike transponders signal on a computer screen. B) The bike transponders weren’t working well.  Sooooo, a few times the announcer is “Eric Bostrom is out of the race…nope, sorry, he is in second place.” It was crazy. I like BrammoJenn’s commentary of  “Go ahead and scare the crap out of me.” Exactly.

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SteveO making a run at Barnes. Would it be enough? That Lightning bike is FAST…but part of Brammo’s stratagy was to keep close and catch Barnes at the end. Brammo felt they had the better battery with more energy at the end than the Lightning bikes.

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Steve Atlas pulls ahead of Eric Bostrom. Now Barnes 1st, Atlas 2nd, Bostrom 3rd.

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And that was the finishing order. Barnes, Atlas, Bostrom. Brammo takes 2nd and 3rd. A very good day for Team IconBrammo.

Both bikes finish. Both riders on the Podium. Cue the Champagne.

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I’m not good with play by play, but I can say a few things.

1) Steve Atlas drove his ass off. A great ride by him. Aggressive and strong. Great Job! “Lots of new parts” didn’t keep him from riding fast and hard.

2) Eric Bostrom was riding great and seemed very fast…but his bike visibly slowed down at one point. Some of the Brammo crew thought he was holding back for the end, but I didn’t think so. The bike just lost a bit of speed.

It was only the second time he had ridden the bike, so he and Brammo will improve. It was still a very strong ride. I talked to Eric a bit after the race. He took the blame, which is crazy, and told me that he was coming up over the hill and saw Barnes ahead and thought he could grab back a second all at one time and just pushed the bike too much and felt her “glitch”. There is a patience to motorcycle driving and he felt he had tried too hard. But that is part of the sport and also part of the learning. He will be a great rider for Brammo.

3) The Lightning bike is fast, and Barnes is an amazing rider. But the gap is closing. SteveO came in second by less than 3 seconds. Eric, without the glitch, would have been right there too. Fun times ahead.

4) The racing is eerily quiet. Especially after hearing those crazy MotoGP bikes.

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Paddock Photos. Congrats Steve Atlas. And Team IconBrammo.

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Paddock Photo. Congrats to Team IconBrammo’s newest rider, Eric Bostrom.

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I didn’t get to the Paddock for the above photos…so mine is a bit more lonely.

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Eric Bostrom post race.

SUPER nice guy. I met him on Friday and asked if I could get a photo of him and the bike. He was busy, but told me he would get back to me in a bit. But then he went one way, I went another. On Saturday he came up to me and said, “Gavin, sorry I never got around to taking that photo for you.” I couldn’t believe he remembered my name, let alone remembered about a silly photo op. We didn’t do it Saturday either, but we did get to it on Sunday. Thanks Eric. 🙂 Still sorry about blinding you on Saturday.

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So the racing was done for Brammo and the Electric Motorcycles. Congrats to all the teams, all the riders. After that it was back to the Marketing Tent. But even that was a bit slow as the finals of the MotoGP was coming up and EVERYBODY was watching that. I spent some time at the Paddock, some time watching LOUD motorcycles and some time in Marketing. But it all seems like everything and everybody was now relaxing.

Shelina did come over to the Marketing Tent to try out the new Empulse TTX. And she always draws a crowd. So that was a nice addition to the end of the last day.

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Adrian and Shelina. Shelina smiling is a given…Adrian, not so much 🙂

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Glasses and Shirt match the TTX livery. Nice job.

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End of last day. All races done. Everybody leaving and still Shelina and the TTX bring a crowd.

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Shelina running the gears for the crowd.

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Brian bring the Empulse TTX back into the tent and spinning the wheel on the astrocarpet.

I was trying to get some video of the Empulse in motion as I did have one person come up to me and have a longish conversion about the bike. He mentioned that he still hasn’t seen the Empulse being driven and until then….well he had/has doubts….and we will leave it at that. Sadly I couldn’t get my phone on fast enough. Next time I will direct him to the Hell for Leather review or let him know where James is doing Demo rides. I will just say, “Good luck and I hope for much success to you. The market needs both Brammo and Zero to succeed.”

I did also talk to a Zero employee for a bit. He agreed. If the market is so small that only one company can survive, well that doesn’t bode well for even that one company in the long term. And he liked the Empulse. 🙂

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So then it was the end of the last day. Truck loaded, tent empty. Time for the Goodbyes.

Adrian had two comments at the end that I remember.

1) “So Gavin, is there anything promised that wasn’t delivered?” Interesting, possibly loaded, question. Hmmm, let’s see…did Brammo promise me a Plus at SECA? Nope. An Empulse at SECA? Nope. So I replied, “No. Thanks, I had a great time.” Admittedly I was hoping for a surprise…but was also pretty sure I was waiting a bit longer to upgrade the Legacy Enertia loaner bike.

2) Adrian, “Well Ok. Thanks so much for all the work you did. I thought you would spend the whole weekend in the Hospitality Suite, so it was nice that you worked so hard.” Me, “Wait….that was an option???”

Truthfully I wouldn’t have had nearly as much fun if I spent the whole time in the Hospitality Suite. That said, I would have spent more than 4 minutes there…which is how long I was there over the whole 3 days.

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Adrian, Adam, David, Sarah and Me.

Special thanks to my 17 Mile Drive and Marketing tent buddies. BrammoDavid, BrammoJenn, Adam, Adrian, Sarah and James. Thanks for putting up with me. And thanks for letting me hang out and play Brammo Employee for a few days. Fun, Hard and Interesting. Kinda like Physics or…well Physics is the only thing that is Fun, Hard and Interesting.

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Till Next Time…

Gavin

For more info on Brammo, please visit: www.brammo.com
For more images, photos, discussions and all around Brammo goodness: visit, lurk and maybe join: www.brammoforum.com

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**Damn marketing…I don’t even like Red Bull and now I’ve mentioned them half a dozen times.





Brammo Blog : Saturday: Laguna Seca, Day 2.

20 08 2012

Blog 34: I play salesman again. I play “Solar Reflector” again. And I get into the Pit for some qualifying racing.

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Ok, Saturday was hella fun. Hella busy. Hella tiring. Just a Lotta Hella Everything.

Before I get into the day I have to “right a wrong.” I met a number of people on Friday and didn’t mention them. I met the race crew and they were all very nice to me (when not running around like crazy). Greg is great, and designed a beautiful bike with the TTX.  Brian’s dad is a wonderful man. And I liked how I would be introduced and a few seconds later you see the light go on and they say, “Oh, you’re that Gavin.” I’m not sure if it was a good thing or a bad thing…and didn’t ask as I was afraid of the answer.

And I met Charles Hennekam of FIM. A nice, very outgoing gentleman. And, not surprisingly, very busy and much in demand at Laguna Seca.

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And Rupal Patel, director of TTXGP. She just might be the sweetest person I had ever met. We had a nice long conversation in the Paddock on Friday. On Saturday I saw her again and walked up and gave her a hug. I’m not sure I was supposed to do that, but she is just so nice you have to greet her with more enthusiasm than normal.

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I think both were so pleased that everything was done (all the HARD work of setting up the race was finished) and that they could spend time talking and meeting people and being “fans” just like everybody else at Laguna Seca.

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But Saturday was mostly about Qualifying. And trying to get a Pit Pass was the first task I hoped to accomplish. That is after helping out in the Marketing tent all morning of course. I gotta dance for my supper after all.

Nobody from Brammo had an extra Pit Pass, and both myself and Peter Anton (Director Digital Media & Marketing at Brammo) were on the lookout for a way to get into the Pit.

Since this was an FIM race, with the TTXGP racers invited to make it a combined race, I was told to ask Charles Hennekam, the director of FIM. I had met him a couple of times over the last 2 days, but only fleetingly as he was very busy. I lucked out when I saw him come into the Brammo Marketing tent. Instead of having to look through the thousands of people to find him, he instead came right to me. My My My Said the Spider to the Fly ** 🙂 Well he didn’t come to see me, but to check out the Brammo TTX. Still it was my chance and I got in line to talk to him. He spent about 15 minutes talking to 3 gentlemen and when they finally left I walked up and said, “Hello. Do you remember me? I was the one helping your photographer take photos of the Empulse RR yesterday. I was told you are the man to see about getting a Pit Pass for the Electric Motorcycle qualifying race today.” Charles, “I very sorry but I just gave the last three pit passes to those men from BRD motorcycles, and we have to keep the number of people in the pits down for safety reasons.”

Dang it. I really can’t begrudge giving passes to the BRD people…they make electric motorcycles after all. Still….grrrrrrr. So close.

But this is where Adrian came into play. “Gavin, just tag along. We will be taking photos of the bikes and the girls after the qualifying run, so grab the reflector and just keep walking when we get to the pits.” So I grabbed one reflector and Peter Anton grabbed the other and we just followed the Umbrella Girls and the Photographer straight into the Pit and nobody questioned us in the least. Sweet.

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One of the two Lightning bikes being pushed into the Pit.

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The two Schott Solar bikes.

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A third Brammo bike? Nope, but it is running a Brammo battery, hence the Brammo logo.

Ely Schless’ bike for ProtoMoto

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Pre-Race.

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SteveO chilling pre-race. He seemed in good spirits and ready to go.

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Aaron, SteveO and Peter Anton.

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I ended up with 3 jobs on Pit Row.

1) Lightning was having an issue with a part on one of their bikes. Brammo was nice enough to loan them a few tools and give them a couple of plastic tie-downs. Aaron (Manager, Mechanical Engineering)  gave me the job of making sure ALL of the tools made it back to Brammo’s tool bag. I like the fact that the every expensive Lightning bike was able to race because of a couple of 10 cent plastic tie-downs and a number 4 Allen wrench. Crazy.

All the tools were returned. And I was given job number….

2) I was asked to keep track of SteveO’s lap times. Actually the conversation went something like this: “Gavin, do you have a way to keep close track of time?” Me, “I have my iPhone with a stopwatch on it.” “Great. You’re in charge of keeping track of Steve’s times. Just keep hitting LAP with each time he goes by the same spot in front of you.”

It was a shorter job than I expected. After the first lap I was asked, “What was Steve’s time?” Me, “1:41, plus or minus a half second.” Slight laughing, “1:41 is fine, we’re not worried about half a second here in qualifying on the first lap.”

But SteveO’s bike developed a glitch and he didn’t finish any more laps. I was probably the first to realize there was a problem as I was the one watching the timer and noticing it going longer and longer without SteveO coming by. Luckily his time on that one lap was enough to get him into the final race on Sunday.

My last job in the Pits:

3) Sun reflector dude, again. More on that later….

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Warming the tires with a Brammo battery module.

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Brian watching over Eric’s bike.

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Eric getting mentally set.

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Steve Atlas and Eric Bostrom taking off from the Pit for the start of Qualifying.

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Eric “chatting” while getting a quick suspension adjustment.

It is the nature of the beast in racing, but it is interesting that a glitch kept Eric from getting practice in on Friday, and then a separate glitch kept SteveO from getting more than one lap in on Saturday. What will be in store for Sunday?

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Spinning the tires after an adjustment to Eric’s Empulse RR

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Eric explaining the proper way to fillet a fresh piece of Salmon. Or maybe something about the ride of the bike…but I’m leaning toward fillet.

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Virginia Tech ran their bike out onto the track with about 30 seconds of racing left. Not enough time to run the needed lap to qualify for Sunday’s final.  Since they did raced on Sunday, I gather once you are on track you get to finish your lap. It was great to see them make it…by the skin of their teeth. It was close.

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After the Qualifying, Michael Barnes of Lightning and Eric Bostrom of IconBrammo get together to talk. Michael had the fastest qualifying time. Eric had the second fastest. I really liked how they both just wanted to chat a bit after racing. No crazy competition. Just friendly talk.

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Eric helping move the Empulse RR for the post Qualifying photo shoot.

Not many photos of Steve Atlas. After his bike glitch he was either off with the bike or out of the Pit area. I may have to go to Daytona just to get to talk to SteveO a bit more.

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This photo is from my iPhone as I held the Sun Reflector. I was, not intentionally, driving Eric crazy with the sun in his eyes. I kept apologizing, “Sorry, just doing my job.” He is a really really nice guy…but still I thought he might come over and hit me after the photos. The women had shades, Eric didn’t and it was kinda torture for him. I think his exact quote was, “You couldn’t possibly get the sun more into my eyes if you tried.”

So….Sorry again, E-Boz.

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The Official Brammo photo.

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Shelina’s turn to be blinded by me.

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And Official Brammo photo.

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So Qualifying was over. Photo shoot was over. Time to close up the marketing tent and head to dinner. Dinner was planned for the Cannery Road Brewing Company in downtown Monterey…and I wasn’t going to miss that. There was a large group of Brammo employees (and me), so they put us downstairs in a large room. Slightly sad…the crazy fun was upstairs. Still: good food, good beer and good company. So that was nice.

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Paul, who works on battery tech for Brammo and is in the “famous” Enertia Dyno video, sat on one side of me, Adrian on the other. I have to apologize to Paul. I only talked to him a little bit. My brain was mostly fried from the long day. I really wanted to ask tons of questions about the batteries. Where is the tech right now, where will Brammo be going with the batteries in the near future. But of course I thought of all that the next morning. Next time Paul.

I did like that Brammo also invited the Brammo Girls. Adrian seems very protective of them and watches out for them. It is sweet. And they seemed to have fun. And a free meal is always nice. 🙂  Plus Samuel was hungry…inside joke.

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Instagram photo from Brammo Twitter.

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Let’s see…Steve Atlas was there and spent most of the time talking with Peter Anton. Brian’s Dad was there and I got to briefly meet Brian’s Mom. Eric Bostrom showed up with his fiance, Rebecca, who is as lovely as she is nice. Those two make such a wonderful couple.

I can’t for the life of me remember what I ate, but I had a red ale that was tasty.

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After dinner I had to head back to the Brammo house to get “my” loaner Enertia so I could ride the 24 miles back to Salinas. Most of the Brammo race crew did not go out to dinner. Lots of work and much to review after any racing. Brian, Greg, Aaron and a few others were at the house when I got there. I tend to watch and observe people a bit…maybe too much at times. But I do like to “study” people. It is the “failed” writer in me.

Greg is great. Very friendly. Smart, lots of information, willing to share.

Aaron is nice, but a bit reserved. At least around me. I don’t have any problem with that. I am a stranger….and we all know about Stranger Danger…

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Quite possibly the most disturbing video ever made.

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Brian is “interesting.” I think we talked twice…maybe three sentences from him to me. You can tell he is crazy smart, very focused. A bit intimidating. And he seems a bit wary around strangers. Sort of, “what do they want, what do they bring to the table, how long will they be around, can I trust and rely on them.” But maybe I read too much into it.

I was at the Brammo house late Saturday night and getting ready to leave, just talking a bit about the Enertia and the type of riding I was doing and how it was a loaner from Brammo. I didn’t even know Brian was listening, but then he said from across the room, not even looking up from his laptop, “I guess we need to get you a Plus.” Me, a bit startled, “That would be nice.” It was the first time Brian had joined in on a conversation with me.

Of the crew, Greg could be your friend in a day. Aaron would take a couple of weeks. Brian? It could take a year of more.*** But enough of all that….This isn’t Dear Abby. 🙂

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Till Next Time…The Final Day at Laguna Seca. Coming Wednesday.

Gavin

For more info on Brammo, please visit: www.brammo.com
For more images, photos, discussions and all around Brammo goodness: visit, lurk and maybe join: www.brammoforum.com

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Bonus

I met Eric’s lovely fiancé, Rebecca on Saturday. Super nice. Super sweet. I told Eric, “Rebecca’s gonna love those photos.” Eric, “I’m hoping my over the top expression will save me.” Or he might have said, “my goofy expression”…one of the two.

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And I have no idea what was happening here. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t a “Stevie Wonder drives like this” comment.

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**

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***I’m not dissing Brian at all here. I’m an old comic book guy, so I’ll explain it this way. Think of Brian as Reed Richards of the Fantastic Four. Now he’s in the lab concentrating on some quantum anomaly and I’m a delivery guy bringing Chinese food and girly magazines for Johnny Storm. I’m ringing the doorbell and Mr Fantastic may very well stretch his arm out 30 feet to open the door and give me a tip and grab the food and magazines and put them on the table across the room….all without looking away from his computer and all without really even noticing the delivery man/me at all. So an hour later the Human Torch comes in and says,”Hey, my Chinese food is cold. And the moo goo gai pan has leaked all over my magazines! Why didn’t you tell me the delivery guy was here?” Reed Richards/Brian, “The delivery guy was here? I didn’t notice.” Nuff Said.





BrammoBlog: Laguna Seca. Thursday. Set-up day before the Show.

3 08 2012

Blog 29: I meet the Brammo people and get put to work.

It will be a theme throughout the weekend. Yesterday’s Blog was Heading Home. Today we go “back in time” to the morning before Laguna Seca started. To the morning before 17 Mile Drive. Better get my Enertia up to 88 mph…

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Basically the 4 day weekend went like this: “Hello. Nice to meet you Gavin. Now get to work.”

Adrian told me I would be a VIP, but I didn’t know that meant Very Indentured Person. Luckily is was a fun, though tiring, form of servitude.

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The Brammo Team got to Laguna Seca around 8am. I didn’t arrive till 11. So I missed out on the fun of unloading the Dino DNA truck (my daughter would LOVE that truck).

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So much vacuuming needed done on that horrid outdoor carpeting. Shudder.

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Unloaded, but still tons of work to be done. Posters to hang, bikes to set up…and a 3-D hanging poster board to be made…strangely enough that duty fell on my shoulders**.

Why? Why not I guess.

**Duty fell on my shoulders…hehehe.

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Getting there.

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MY three dimensional sign…So much duct tape on the inside. Box cutters and duct tape can do anything. Not necessarily pretty, but the job was done.

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How Adrian looked 80 percent of the time 🙂 He’s a busy man with that phone.

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Can Brammo make this the next priority now that the Empulse is basically done? People love the dirt bikes.

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Lots of new pamphlets to hand out.

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And finally the tent is done for the day. Adrian is looking at his watch and seeing how the timing is going for our 17 Mile Drive ride. We made it easily.

Only thing missing in the tent is the Empulse TTX, which will go in the center. It is coming with the race team Friday morning.

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Some riding in Video.

First “morning” ride to Seca fooled me. This was at 11am, so I thought every morning would be nice…WRONG.

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Riding up the hill to Seca. 16% grade. Enertia handled it like nothing. I started looking for 32% grade hills.

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A much more typical 7:30 am drive into Seca. Cold, Wet, Foggy. Grrrrr…Fingerless gloves was a bad choice.

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Long Video

This is one of the ways to exit Laguna Seca. It was labeled “Motorcycles only” the first time I drove it. I didn’t know where it went, but I had to ride it. It was a blast. About 5 to 6 miles of fun twisty road with no cars. I didn’t have my helmet cam that day, but knew I wanted to ride it again. The next time I rode it, it was a bit later in the day and the “Motorcycles Only” sign was gone, but still hella fun. I would ride that road everyday if I had the chance.

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Then it was off to the Brammo Pad to clean up before heading to Pebble Beach. Nice place. HUGE.

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After 17 Mile Drive the whole Brammo Crew headed to Bubba Gumps. While waiting I thought I would ask a question to Zoltar. “When will I get my Plus? Who will be the vaulted BrammoEvangelista? What should I get for Dinner?” You know, the typical questions one asks an Oceanside animatronic fortune teller.

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The Reply:

“Dude, I would answer but that Pink Jelly Belly guy is just freaking me out. Why is he there? What does he want? It looks like he is constantly coming my way, yet his eyes always look the other direction. And why does he look like a stomach in a Pepto Bismol ad? No really, can somebody please get him out of that damn window?!?”

It was the second strangest fortune I’ve ever received.

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So Zoltar was no help.

Luckily the Corona-Rita was:)

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Till Next Time…

Gavin

For more info on Brammo, please visit: www.brammo.com
For more images, photos, discussions and all around Brammo goodness: visit, lurk and maybe join: www.brammoforum.com

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Bonus Videos

Bonus Video…2 short clips of Coastal 1. Love that road. I love how the ocean meets mountains in such a close proximity.

shaky and short…iPhone while driving and a motorcycle in the back of the truck.

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Riding in Monterey.

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riding into Monterey.

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looking for the Brammo Pad in Monterey.

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