Although yet to gain her full motorcycle licence, Denise McNally has been bitten by the Superbike bug, and as winner of the THINK! MCN Reporter competition was at Brands Hatch to see the deciding rounds of the Championship.
Here is Denise's report:
Well this was the first competition I have entered so I was completely overwhelmed when I was contacted and told that I had won the brilliant prize of VIP tickets to Brands Hatch and the chance to report on the weekend for MCN.
Although I don't ride yet, my partner Darren has been into motorcycles for most of his life and has a Hayabusa, which I love riding pillion on.
Despite many of the rounds having taken place in dreadful conditions the weather for the weekend at Brands Hatch was fantastic and after arriving on Saturday we had a walk round and then made our way to the THINK! Motorcycle Academy.
We were introduced to John Reynolds and had our picture taken with him before listening to him address the large crowds.
It was great listening to all John’s stories of riding at Brands and also about the work he does with THINK! as the Academy’s ambassador.
Also speaking at the stand on the Saturday was local rider Scott Smart, who along with stories of his career was talking about the importance of wearing good protective clothing whatever the weather and the importance of awareness on the road with it being so different to the track.
I have to confess there have been times when I have worn jeans in hot weather, but after listening to Scott it has certainly made me more aware!
On race day we had a brilliant view of the Paddock Hill Bend for the final two rounds of the series and the atmosphere was electric as we watched Spanish rider Greg Lavilla score a double race win, with Kiyonari retaining the Championship on points.
There was also the added attraction for the massive crowds of James Toseland, who delighted the packed stands by doing a few laps.
The day then got even better when we were lucky enough to be sat next to the double World Superbike Champion in the Bennetts VIP hospitality area, where we had a lovely lunch and a few drinks.
Our VIP passes meant we were also able to get into the Paddock, where we spent some time and saw all the hard work that goes on behind the scenes, and a few celebrities thrown in for good measure, fantastic!
On the way home on the busy M25 I thought about what John Reynolds had been speaking about. He said that he has spent time out on the roads with the police on their Bike Safe Programme and how he continues to learn something new every time he goes out on the roads.
I thought that was really good to hear because if all road users were a bit more willing to listen and learn, surely it could only make our roads safer!