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2010 Red Bull Catalina GP Preview

Friday, December 3, 2010
2010 Catalina GP
Opening ceremonies for the 2010 Catalina Grand Prix will take place at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday morning.
The reincarnation of the Red Bull Catalina GP has been years in the making, but it’s been long enough since the last one that most agree it’s long overdue. Off-road racing on Catalina Island, California hasn’t taken place in 52 years. Think about that…

Everything is based out of the larger city on the island, Avalon, located on the southeastern edge. The seven-mile race course is above the golf course and can be seen in the distance from the downtown area. Information in general about the GP has been hard to come by as the organizers are scrambling to overcome a huge logistical headache associated with hosting this event. The fact that they even pulled it off is amazing, as many doubted it could even be done. Now that it’s here, and it’s on for sure, it’s hard to tell if this is a motorcycle race or just a big party weekend with all the cool things to do off the bike. There’s no doubt that the businesses of Avalon are going to be well-stocked on food and booze as the general buzz around the industry is wound up.

A golf tournament was held today to benefit the AMA District 37 Legal Defense Club. It’s the D37 that are handling much of the race operations in association with My Cuz Vinnie Promotions. Racers are piling into the Catalina Express ferries and gliding across the water for an hour-long ride to Avalon. Nearly 800 entries (many are riders racing multiple classes) will be headed to the Hotel Metropole first thing to complete the registration process that began with an application weeks ago. The Red Bull Beach Blast barbeque will kick off at the Descanso Beach Club this evening, followed by the Grand Prix Party at the M Restaurant. Live music from the Winchester Rebels will rock the Hotel Metropole as well.

Racing starts tomorrow at 8:15 a.m. with the Old Bikes division. All of Saturday is dedicated to vintage machines and equally old riders ranging from 30+ to 50+. After racing action on Saturday, riders and fans can catch Nitro Circus in 3D playing at the casino. NC superstar Travis Pastrana will also make an appearance this weekend. We’ll be there to keep track of the action and are going to try our throttle hand as well in the 250 class on Sunday morning with a 2011 Kawasaki KX250F.

Catalina Island GP
Fans and racers have been flooding into Avalon over the past few days and are eager to witness the rebirth of the Catalina GP.
There are plenty of ties to old racing. For instance, John Stein will pilot a replica of the 250cc works Yamaha bike that Fumio Ito raced in 1958. Why is that relevant? Because Catalina was instrumental in Yamaha’s entry into American off-road racing. Bob Sangren was the last man to win the Catalina GP in ’58, and there are plenty of top-level riders looking to add their name beside his. All the pulse-pounding racing comes to a head with the Pro classes on Sunday afternoon at 1:45. Riders like Jacob Argubright, Alexander Smith, Kurt Caselli, Paul Krause, David Kamo, Ricky Johnson, Johnny Campbell, Kendall Norman, Colton Udall and Timmy Weigand will all vie for the top position. We ran into legendary Danny LaPorte in the port and he’s going to line up with the young guns just for kicks.

"I'm stoked to be part of such a historic race," said four-time Baja 1000 winner Norman in a recent release. "I've heard so much about it... the pioneers of the sport racing old-school bikes in one of the most unique locations imaginable. It's great that we'll finish off the season with what's sure to be one of the most fun races of the year."

Once the big finale is over, most will be leaving to make it back in time for the work week, but we’ll be sticking around until Monday morning before heading to the mainland. Anyone else sticking around Sunday night can cool their heels as the city celebrates a tree lighting ceremony for the holiday season.

There’s plenty going on in Avalon, so if you haven’t made any plans for the weekend, book a ticket and head over for some of the racing and recreational activities. For more information, including a complete list of riders, visit www.thecatalinagrandprix.com and stay tuned to MotorcycleUSA.com for updates.

Updated 2010 Red Bull Catalina Grand Prix Schedule Of Events:

9:00am - Check-in opens at the Metropole Hotel. Enter through the M Restaurant. You will receive your rider package, loaner transponder and numbers (if you shipped your bike on Sunday).

9:00am - Impound opens at The Field of Dreams - across from the Fire Station and City Hall.
Here, you will attach your transponder, fuel your bike and work on it if needed in the
American Honda Rider Support Area.

10:00am - The Catalina Grand Prix Golf Tournament. Call 310 510 0530 to schedule a tee time.
$30 green fee; $11 club rental; $10 golf cart rental
2010 Catalina GP
Following racing action on Saturday there will be a Grand Prix Dinner located at the Casino Ballroom.

4:30-7:30pm - Grand Prix Barbeque. Descanso Beach Club $20 adults; $12 children (3-11). Tickets must be purchased beforehand at a Discovery Tours Ticket Booth

6:00pm - Mandatory Riders Meeting - Descanso Beach Club
Industry legend Preston Petty is ready to race this DKW.

8:00pm - Grand Prix Party. The M Restaurant - Live entertainment and drink specials

Saturday, December 4, 2010

7:30am - Opening Ceremonies - Downtown at the Wrigley Stage - Race #1 Parade Lap through town

8:15am-3:30pm - The Catalina Grand Prix - Race #1-Race #6
Spectator area is located above hole #1 of the golf course. Golf cart shuttles will provide transportation up to the spectator area from impound. There will be some limited seating available as well as beverages for purchase in the spectator area. The vender area will be set up in the City Park across from impound and the Fire Station. Stop by to purchase race souvenirs and support the local community.

4:30-7:30pm - Grand Prix Dinner - Casino Ballroom $25 adults; $17 children (3-11)

8:00pm - Nitro Circus - Avalon Theater - price to be announced

Sunday, December 5, 2010

8:15am-3:30pm - The Catalina Grand Prix - Race #7-Race #12
Spectator area is located above hole #1 of the golf course. Golf cart shuttles will provide transportation up to the spectator area from impound. There will be some limited seating available as well as beverages for purchase in the spectator area. The vender area will be set up in the City Park across from impound and the Fire Station. Stop by to purchase race souvenirs and support the local community.

5:00-9:00pm - Shop at Home Night - Residents and Visitors welcome.
Tree lighting ceremony at 5pm on the Wrigley Stage. Santa and his helpers will be arriving by fire truck. Most local business will be open during this time for "Shop At Home" discounts and deals.

Motorcycle Pick-Up Information
After the race, all motorcycles will be shipped back to the same location in Wilmington (100 W. Water St.). Be prepared to pick up your bike on either Tuesday, December 7, or Wednesday, December 8, between 12pm and 8pm. If you do not pick up your bike during these specified days/times, you will be charged a $30 per day storage fee. 

www.thecatalinagrandprix.com

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