Today I should be in the final phase of preparation for my trip to Queensland for the Australian Historic road racing championships. The fact that I am not is in no ways a reflection upon my organisational skills. It is, instead, a reflection on the fact that the appalling weather that has dogged the east coast of Australia this year has decided to make an appearance again at entirely the wrong time.
Two separate wet weather events are scheduled to blanket virtually the whole eastern half of the country over the next 9 days and the first of them has already started. Those of you with good memories will recall that, the last time I decided to ride to a race meeting in Queensland resulted in a similar drowning that made the trip there less than enjoyable.
Suffice it to say that I am not going to run that risk again. And, since it appears (unfortunately) that the entry for the meeting is substantially down on previous events, risking the journey on the bike, in the wet, to be faced with a wet meeting as well is just too horrible to contemplate.
I did do a run yesterday and tried out a longer period wearing my new Fusport boots (very nice, thank you) but that was in the dry AND with the expectation that it was going to be my last chance to do so for some time.
To give you some idea of just what this weather has been like and the impact that it has had, here are a few figures.
The average annual rainfall in Wollongong is 1348mm. Yes, we are coastal and we do get a fair bit of rain.
The total rainfall up to the start of October this year is 1947mm and substantial rainfall is predicted in the next 9 days as already stated. So far, of the 275 days we have had in 2022, it has rained on 145 of them. Given that there are still 90 odd days left in this year and that we are back in the grip of La Nina (or so the scientists say) the likelihood that we will have a substantial increase in these figures before the year is out is very high indeed.
Aside from the sad fact that people who live in flood-prone areas are likely to experience widespread flooding (some towns and areas have had substantial and devastating floods THREE times already this year) it is also looking likely that riding, and especially some longer-distance touring is going to be much restricted.
My limited forays around the local area have shown that, even if it isn’t raining and even if no more substantial falls WERE to be predicted, the conditions of nearly all of my favourite riding roads and localities are so bad that riding to and in those locations is not going to be an enjoyable experience, especially on a dedicated road bike.
On another subject, I’m sure that many of you follow the blog of MotoGP journalist, Mat Oxley. I do recommend you follow him if you don’t, the guy is the real deal. Well, it seems that the Ducati management have taken an exception to some of the things that he has written lately (all true and verifiable) and have banned him from receiving or asking for any information about their team. This is a blatant case of shooting the messenger and shows just how petty Ducati management is. Of course, the fact that he has now revealed this information and revealed their stupidity is likely to make the Ducati boffins even more angry and show the rest of us how they really have no idea about winning friends and influencing people. Given how Ducati has treated their star riders over the years, it couldn’t happen to nicer people in my opinion. It’s going to bite them on the bum and that’s for sure.
Finally, on the subject of riding on less-than ideal surfaces, anybody got an adventure bike that I can borrow? 🙂