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The fans and what they love – and hate – about Brands

Published: 22 July 2001

Updated: 19 November 2014

THE sun is shining and the crowds are sweating and with the second qualifying session over, we follow the crowds back to the campsite, for all the world a mass Spanish siesta as every man, woman and child seeks the cover of canvas in the ridiculous heat.

Luckily for us a few stayed outside to talk about what makes Brands so special for them. Rick and Sandra Cox from West Sussex are far from conventional: not only does he ride a Laverda Ghost 650, but he's also here to support his favourite racer - America's Bostrom.

"Look," he says "I'm not saying I'd be unhappy if a Brit won it. But I'm here to see Bostrom. It's the way he rides. My lifetime ambition is to get over to Laguna Seca and see him take the Corkscrew."

Sandra butts in about her opinion on the Brands ablutions and adds: "It's my ambition to have a shower here! Have you seen them? They're a disgrace now."

"She right," interjects husband Rick, "I know the camping is cheap, but I don't mind paying extra to get more showers in. By the time you've queued up it's not worth it. That's the only real gripe though. I'll tell you what is nice, having a Sainsbury's shop here. They need a medal!"

The next person we bump into fancies himself as mystic Meg."I reckon for the first race," says Daz Young, "Hodgson, Chili then Edwards. Hislop's going to crash though."

Are you sure?

"Absolutely, but he doesn't get hurt and actually comes second in the next race. Chili wins and Bayliss comes second…." Right ho, Daz. "Just as long as Edwards doesn't win..." mutters his mate, Matt Cross, through a mouthful of barbecue food.

The final member of the trio – Tweeky – pipes up: "What about poor Walker? That was the biggest kick in the teeth I've ever seen. He tried 100 per cent every race and got nothing back at all. He's a real wasted talent now - and as for that contract clause stopping him from riding anywhere else...don't get me started."

But at least the facilities are good. "Oh yeah," agrees Matt, "I've stayed everywhere and this is definitely what the others should be aiming for. Silverstone was half finished and Donington was just terrible."

Another camper, Bob Nesbitt, agreed. "I've camped here ever since 1976 and the Transatlantic Trophy. It's really good. But I only drive here from Gillingham - I can't take all the kit on my X-11. I've heard qualifying was good, but I, err..missed it. I sort of got distracted by all those promo girls. I could watch them all day, you know."

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