Saturday mornings we headed to the track early, geared up, set both the tyre pressures and the fork air pressures, checked the bike over and headed out for the sight lap.
The sight lap provided the first opportunity to run our Suzuki RM-Z450 at speed! Unfortunately I was unable to head out to a local ride park in the weeks leading up to Hattah to get used to the higher speeds so this was my chance to see how fast the 450 was.
I felt good on the sight lap, suffered from a little arm pump which was good, as usually if I get arm pump on the first ride that is it for the day. I completed the lap before lining up ready for my shot at a timed lap.
My Prologue lap went very well. The track this year got a lot more beat up than usual and there was some decent braking bumps heading into a lot of the corners and the higher speed sections had plenty of square edges to keep you on your toes. For the first time since I started racing this event I was able to complete my prologue lap without having anyone from behind catch me and the rider in front on me I only just reeled in by the end of the lap.
There were a few sketchy moments out there, coming from a 250F last year to the 450 this year, it was easy to forget or not notice how much speed I was carrying into a corner as the 450 was revving no way near as hard. There was at least two occasions that I thought I was not going to pull up in time and make the corner but on both occasions things worked out well.
Crossing the line I was pleased with my lap, it felt good, but I was not sure exactly how it had gone. The past two years my lap time was near identical at just on four minutes and thirty seconds and placed me right on the 300th place mark out of the 400 riders entered.
Heading over to the timing sheets it took a little while to to find my name, starting from the the final rider and worked my way back. After passing through a few pages I started to think maybe my transponder had not worked! I finally found my name, sitting in 260th position with a lap time of Four Minutes and seven seconds, easily my best prologue time and result.
With my starting position sorted, I quickly caught up with prologue winner Toby Price for a quick report which you can read https://www.fullnoise.com.au/news/index.cfm?fuseaction=display_full&News_id=20304&Ntitle=Desert%20Racing:%20Toby%20Price%20Kicks%20Of%20Hattah%20Desert%20Race%20Defence%20With%20Narrow%20Prologue%20Victory
From there it was a dash back to the motel to put this report together, the prolouge report and quickly edit our prologue video that you can view above, before heading to the supermarket for supplies for tomorrow's big race.
My gear bag is packed, my USWE hydration packs are filled and we are ready to go racing tomorrow.