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What You Said About MotorSports Travel

Read some of the happy travellers' letters and see for yourself how others have enjoyed their Motorsports Tours.

May 08

Hi Leonie

Well we're home again after a wonderful trip.  Everything went according to schedule.  All the bookings worked like a dream including the picking up the GP tickets.  F1 Corporate has their pickup window which was at the main gate, so it was all very smooth.

All in all, the trip was marvellous - much more of an adventure than we had anticipated, especially during our month of campervanning.  To say that driving on the European roads was challenging was putting it mildly.  Between the narrow roads, left hand driving, size of the van, speed and volume of traffic on the motorways and the challenge of finding a campsite each night we were well and truly pushed out of our comfort zone daily.  Great fun, most of the time...  We handed the van back in Paris , with enormous relief, a. to actually find the rental place and b. to get it back without any damage.  We did think it might have just been us breathing a huge sigh of relief, but there was another Australian couple, a deal younger than us returning their van and they had exactly the same reaction to their three week hire.  Not for the faint hearted.  Next time we think a car and cottage accommodation might be the way to go!!!!!

Istanbul was fabulous.  A city filled with great sights and wild and crazy traffic and people.  The GP was hugely enjoyable, not just for the racing, but also for the antics of the locals.  The race is only a few years old there and they've built an entirely new track which is only used once a year for the race.  The Turks aren't into motor racing, so the spectators were by and large European, the fun came from watching the locals filling the hillsides to get a free view, trying to park where they weren't allowed despite army police directing them away and the illegal bread sellers who managed to infiltrate the stand and sell bread rolls for a fraction of the cost of the official track food - all quite a joy to watch.  The official Formula 1 village was about a quarter the size of the one at Albert Park and didn't have much atmosphere.  Our seats were great, high up in the stand with great views of the track.  To get to the stand you had to go back out onto the perimeter road and into another area.  Our stand had three small food concessions, four umbrellas and six chairs - great for a stand designed to hold 3000.  Mind you there was no where near that amount on the Sat and perhaps 2000 on race day.  All in all a wonderful experience and although we may not repeat it in Turkey, we certainly are planning on another overseas race in the future, especially as it looks like we'll lose the Australian race in 2010.

I couldn't have organised it without you and I really appreciate all your work and enthusiasm in making it happen.  Might be a quiet year next year, but 2010 could see another trip, if so I'll be in contact.

As always, many, many thanks

Lynne
Mentone Vic

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May 08

Hi Leonie

Happy customer reporting in.  The Istanbul GP was quite an event and we had a wonderful time. The tickets were where they should have been, we had no problem collecting them and view from them was great.  All-in-all F1 Corporate did a terrific job.

I'm attaching a couple of photos for your collection.  One of two rather dishevelled race goers and the other of the 'facilities' behind our stand.

We hadn't realised that the track is only 3 years old, pristine in many ways, a bit soulless in others.  The event had the usual F1 village, but it was tiny compared to Albert Park, in the end our fun came from watching the Turkish idea of organisation.  From the cars trying to get into the vendors car park and the bread sellers throwing their wares over the fence, selling them to spectators very much against GP rules. The traffic chaos on perimeter roads as people double parked and climbed onto hillsides to watch the race without paying ......... all wonderful to watch.

Weatherwise it was cool and very windy, especially in our seats at the top of the stand, but the racing was good and it was a wonderful spectacle.

Thanks again for your work in organising it.  We have one day left in Istanbul and then turn for home - back next Saturday.  I'll email you when we get back and fill you in on the rest of the trip.

Cheers
Lynne

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April 08

Hi Leonie

Thought it was about time I let you know how our trip was going. We've
been away three weeks now and the time seems to have flown, as we've been
busy every day. Our week in Paris was marvellous. The apartment was on
the St Martin Canal and had everything we needed plus was in a great
location. We spent the week walking the streets of Paris absorbing the
sights and sounds.

The campervan pickup went off without a hitch - once the taxi found the
place. Must admit we're a bit concerned about finding it again to return
the van, but Tim reckons we can always organise another taxi and follow it
to the place. It's buried in the Paris suburbs, down lots of narrow
streets - great for driving when you haven't driven anything that size for
awhile. Tim's found the French and Italian roads and motorways something
of a challenge, but we've worked our way over to Hungary and he's now
feeling a deal more comfortable on the narrow roads and with the somewhat
over enthusiastic Europeans drivers.

We had four nights in Venice, two at a campsite we stayed at 34 years ago
and the other two in a hotel in San Marco, which was great. It's such a
wonderful place. We've just spent the last two days in Budapest and leave
tomorrow for Prague and then it's onto Berlin and back to Paris to return
the van and fly to Istanbul.

We're having a great time and the final week in Istanbul, with the race,
is still ahead of us.

Cheers for now
Lynne
MENTONE VIC

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Travelled Feb 08

Hi Michael and Leonie,

Where do I start to tell you all the grouse things Fred and I did and saw in the US on our trip in Feb 08 from Florida to Los Angeles ? Universal Studios was going to be something to fill in the time in LA before we went to the 50 th Daytona 500 in Florida but it was like nothing I have ever seen in my life. The tour of the back lots, seeing how Movies and TV shows are made, all the shows that are on all day and the rides were fantastic, I highly recommend going there it is really an eye opener!

The 50 th Daytona 500 was an awesome experience that I will never forget. The accommodation in Orlando was good and the coach trip each day to and from the track was like precision clockwork, dropping us right near our stand. In the first couple of days we could move around to check out the view from other seats but on the last day the stand was packed out and we stayed put. I got lots of photos and video footage, which I have put on the DVD for you. The start of the race with the National anthem, the fighter jet fly over and the fireworks going off set the tone for a fabulous day of racing. I could not believe how organised the place is for food and drink and the huge toilet block under the stands to cater for the 200,000 plus people who were there. The Daytona Experience, where they had the previous winners' cars on display and the simulators and photo op in front of the 50 th Daytona 500 sign was excellent. You can not imagine in your wildest dreams the atmosphere at Daytona when the racing is about to start, you have to be there to understand it was "Magic".

The only thing I would change is a spend extra little money and take the option to have higher seats in the in the spot we were sitting which was pretty much in the middle of the back straight, cause being halfway down or right up front a lot of your view is blocked by the stand and people forever standing! If I was to go again I would sit right up the left hand side of the stand just as the cars exit turn 2 as that was a better view and seemed to be where the crashes happened =)

Speaking of magic, what about Disneyworld for 4 days, what an experience that is, shows, rides, water parks, robotics it was unbelievable. We even went for a ride in a NASCAR at the speedway. It would have been better if it was Daytona but.

The NHRA in Phoenix blew my mind and my ear drums out. When the Top Fuel came out I was videoing the burnout and as I have never been to the drag racing before when they took off, I freaked out and (as you will see on the DVD) I missed the run because I didn't have any ear plugs and was bent over crouched down in the stands trying to cover my ears! The yanks thought this was very funny and knew immediately we were Green Horns.

It was an awesome experience to see and feel the 8,000 horsepower of the dragster and funny car roaring down the drag strip. These CRAZY machines accelerate from 0 to 540kmh in like 5 seconds! It will seriously blow your mind. It literally feels like there is an earthquake when these things take off! Words just really can't describe it...

In Las Vegas the Dirt Track racing and the qualifying for the next NASCAR race was great as well as the glitz and glam of the city of lights. I have to tell you about the chick in the car on the road back to Phoenix . We where driving from Vegas to phoenix to watch the world of outlaws and this chick sped past us on the freeway and I decided to give chase and needless to say we got the Phoenix fast without any speeding fines.

The WOL in Phoenix gave me the thrill of my life, not just to go to an event I have seen on TV and read about in magazines but also at the end of the race the spectators get to go into the centre to walk through the Sprint car pits.

I shook the hand of my all time favourite driver Steve Kinser, talked to him and had a photo taken with him. Ever since I was a kid I dreamt of that moment and it finally came true. Now I can say "I've been there, seen that, done that and drive my friends mad

Thanks heaps for all your arranging and talking me through everything before we went. It made it easier to keep track of what was next and be on top of all our plans for the each day because it was a "Full on trip".

Enjoy the photos (feel free to use any on the website) + DVD of the racing.

You will here from me for my next adventure to the USA 's world of racing.

My suggestion for any one planning to go to the USA for a MotorSports event "Don't just dream about doing it, Do it".

Book it with MotorSports Travel and trust them, they really know what they're doing. I found there site on the internet and gave them a call and they where really helpful straight away. Thanks once again Leonie and Michael! I couldn't have organised such an awesome and flawless holiday without you!

Best regards,
Dayn, Leongatha , Victoria .

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October 2007

Hi Leonie and Mick,

"Thanks" for the exciting and fun trip that the whole family enjoyed. You made sure everyone was involved from my parents to my son as well as our mate Steve. The tour in October 2007, with you for the NHRA and the Sema Show in Las Vegas was beyond my wildest dreams. I will reminisce the whole trip now.

The tour to the Petersen Museum packed cars to drool over and motoring displays, Hollywood, Mann's Chinese Theatre and of course Ricky Martin at Virgin Records, San Diego, the flight simulator on the battle ship and Universal Studios is amazing to see how they make movies with shows and ride and stuff, were all wonderful experiences.

The memory of visiting Boyd Coddington is etched in my mind and will stay with us forever and it is such a shame about his passing. What a man, a legend in his own time, he gave my son a hat, T shirt and had his photo taken with us plus arranged for the tour of the back area where the TV program was made, the paint shop and meeting Dwayne.

It still amazes me how you find your way around that huge city of L.A. but I guess you have been there so many times it's like home to you.

But back the real stuff.

The Las Vegas Motor Speedway track and the racing is a holiday in it's self.
Drive a NASCAR or a ride along as some of us did, the souvenir shop for NASCAR, WOL, Indy car gear and the Cobra Museum . The NHRA drag racing is so spread out I could see my favourite drivers easily and I have photos of heaps of them.

The hundreds of Sportsman Series car were fantastic to watch with great paint schemes and great performance. The Pro Mod cars were absolutely amazing, loud and with so much grunt they wheel stand every time they take off.

The atmosphere turns electric when the Pro Stock, Top Fuel and Funny Car came out and the hair stands up on the back of my neck, "this is what we are here for". Our seats were so close to the action the rubber and smoke from the burnouts came all over me, Oh Yeh that is Drag Racing. Las Vegas Motor Speedway - The Strip is much better than Sonoma (the trip in 2006) we got so much closer to the track and I walked thru all the pit area to the end of the drag strip. I can see why you love this event so much.

While us guys were at the track, Mum, Dad, Rocky and Diane wondered around all the Casinos on the other Strip, shopping and sightseeing. They had a great time and not much gambling which was good, too much to see I think.
Did you find out what Steve got up to every night while the rest of us were getting some shut eye? He sure made use of the time he had in Las Vegas .

How could I have forgotten the Bakersfield Hot Rod Show and Nostalgia Drag Racing? When you turned off the freeway and all I could see was Orange trees I thought you had lost the plot. Still more Orange trees go by and I am sure you have lost the plot now and then just up ahead on the right a gap in the trees and "thank god it is the Drag Strip". I should have known you knew where you were going. In my mind I could here you say "I've been there" but I was so excited to get there I couldn't wait.

Well after reminding myself of all that fun and excitement all I have to say is "When and where do we go next for the NHRA and Drag Racing Mick"

I recommend you to all my mates when they talk about going to the US , but it is a shame they are only talking not going. Talk is cheap. They don't know what they are missing out on and will never understand until they go.

All the best and seriously let me know what you are doing next because I'm there too. Trip No. 3 with MotorSports Travel and Mick, um where shall we go? US Nationals maybe?

Sincerely yours,
Vince D Adelaide SA

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Dear Leonie & Michael,

RE: USA MOTOR SPORT TOUR 2006

I thought I might put some words together to express my thanks and to congratulate you on your planing and execution of our recent tour of the United States. Whilst I was a little hesitant at first, travelling with people that I was not familiar with, my nervousness was soon put aside as your happy nature and experience travelling with groups showed through.

The, NHRA Drag Racing events were fantastic, as was the Super Chevy Show in Florida. Meeting Don Garlitz in Gainesville and spending time in the tower at the track was something I will never forget. I wrote to him after, to thank him and got a hand written letter back, WHAT A MAN. The time and effort you guys must have invested in getting all those bookings, tickets, reservations, flights and plans in order were well spent as not a single hitch was encountered. Our motel rooms where ready and waiting, the rental cars where prepared for us on arrival, our ticketing for each event was flawless and although I suspect you might have had some problems to deal with during our 3 week visit, you handled it all seamlessly and with out a fuss to ensure our enjoyment. Your personal touches and friendship, to our entire group without exception was noticed and enjoyed by all.

The additional things we did were greatly appreciated and certainly added the finishing touches to an experience that I will never forget. Your knowledge of the local automotive industry with regard to Speed Shops, Motor Museums and Car Shows was incredible. The time spent at Disneyland and Knott berry Farm and your ability to be at everyone's disposal at a minutes notice was an experience in its self and was further testament to your tour planing and guiding prowess. Our side trip to San Diego and tour of the Aircraft Carrier Midway was another unexpected delight.

I would highly recommend to anyone who might be considering a tour of the United States with an eye to experiencing Motor Racing and its associated attractions to avail themselves of your services.

Thankyou for the experience of a lifetime, I could not have done it with out your services. Without a doubt I will be on another tour and can't wait to take off again with you guys.


Yours truly,
Len Wood
Melbourne
Victoria, Australia

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Dear Leonie,

On behalf of the eleven of us from the Corvette Club of South Australia, I want to "Thank You" for arranging our trip to the United States in August 2006.

The organization of all of the flights, accommodation, hire cars and shuttles worked out like clockwork. We especially appreciate that you arranged for Tony to take us on the Special Tour of the Corvette Museum and Corvette Factory in Bowling Green Kentucky and dine out with the local Corvette club. Corvettes at Carlisle blew our minds for the 2 days and we all want to do that again in 2009.

The Corvette parts shopping all over L.A., car shows, museum and model shop visits filled the days and our luggage. Irwindale speedway night, driving a Nascar and the ride-alongs in a Nascar certainly got the adrenaline pumping for the whole group and was a great break from everything being about Corvettes.

Las Vegas and the nearby sightseeing were fantastic. We all had different things we wanted to see and with you and Michael being their making it all happen for each of us. The attention to detail on the daily itineraries with times of everything we were doing kept us on track and I am still amazed that we got it all done.

Our accommodation was very reasonably priced and all our motels were very nice, we could not fault them. Everything ran so smoothly we had no problems and we couldn't fault anything. We were so grateful for everything that was done for us to make our holiday so great. It was a big job for you to organize, especially as it was for 3 weeks and then everyone's extensions to the end of the tour.

We would recommend you to everyone who wants to do Motorsports travel or any travel as you have traveled a lot yourself and know the best way to do it.

Respectfully yours,
Jane Gesell
On be half of the USA Gang
Corvette Club of South Australia

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Hi Leonie & Michael,

I wanted to write and wish you all the best with your new venture with MotorSports Travel. This is not new to you guys at all as you have been doing the tours for years but focusing your efforts in this area you do so well in, is great for the race fan of all Motorsports.

When we went to the U.S.A. with you to see Shirley Muldowney in her last race at the strip in Las Vegas was the greatest thrill, as you know I have followed her for years. To meet her and have her sign the "Last Pass" poster for me was a dream come true. The N.H.R.A. at the Strip was so exciting, the feeling of every Top Fuel and Funny Car run vibrate through your body makes watching it on TV a reminder of those fantastic days at the track.

All the sightseeing we did, all arranged perfectly, hotels of good quality but keeping the budget in mind and of course you guys being our driver made it all so simple.
I still remember you had to changed the days around in San Diego because of the fires there and took us back to see Seaworld when it was safer so we didn't miss out or waste our money. Thanks for that we appreciated it.

I believe any race fan booking with you will be happy with your intricate arrangements whether you are taking them or they are doing there own thing.

Best wishes,
Brenda & Chris Cleveland.

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Dear Leonie and Michael,

Thanks for all the arrangements on the USA trip for our group from the Corvette Car club of SA. We would never have done all the parts shopping and museum visits and especially the personalised tour of the Corvette Plant and Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky without your organising skills.

From the start we knew we were in good hands, the meetings about the trip prior to going, the comprehensive itinerary for each day and of course your wake up calls to make sure we were on the move each day. With your knowledge of LA and you driving us everywhere, this trip was exciting, enjoyable and relaxing.

Nascar driving and ride along was a great thrill. It took my breath away! I had a great time driving there again in the second van and the walky-talky's kept us in touch on the freeways no problem. Thank goodness for the Esky we dragged across the U.S.A., coldies at the ready, we were touring Ozzie style. We ran amuck in Las Vegas each night, the free time was great for the boys to do there thing and the couples to do the boring stuff.

Corvettes at Carlisle was mind blowing for 2 days with that huge area full of parts, cars on show, cars for sale and the people we met with contacts for parts was fantastic.

I think your Specialist Tag-a-long-Touring with every step carefully planned is a fantastic idea for everyone whether they have been to the USA before or not. I can remember getting to the USA on my first trip with no idea of driving over there and where to head first and got lost heaps. Never do that again mate.

Once again Thanks and Job Well Done.

Kind regards
Dave Schrapel

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Mick and Leonie

I want to let everyone know that your tours are the best, planned so well for each day with the care that no one else will do.

When we went I was amazed at all the things we did while in the USA. LA parts shopping for my car, small car shows, museums and sightseeing as well. Topeka N.H.R.A. where they were setting records all the time and the close contact to the drivers in each class. Super Chevy shows in Bristol and Indianapolis where we met Rob Vandergriff and Roger Gunstine the organiser of the shows and the magazine.

I thought they were joking when they said they would put us in the magazine but the Aussies made it in there. The NASCAR Ride-along in Bristol was so exciting as well.
I know you can plan any trip for anyone in the USA and they would love the whole time.
The Tag-a-long tours are a fantastic idea for anyone wether they have been before or not as they can relax and enjoy everything there is to offer.

Combining two motor sports events, parts shopping and other car related events to suit the people going would make their trip the adventure of a lifetime like mine was.
Good luck with your future endeavours and please keep me informed about future USA trips.

Regards
Dennis Cauchi.

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