30th September to 3rd October 2010 - Sandown Leisurefest.

After helping Phil from Trailblazers RV for the past 2 years at Leisurefest, I again jumped at the opportunity to drive our rig around Sandown.
Marg and I left Broadwater Tourist Park on Wednesday 22nd September and had overnighters at Moree, Peak Hill and Shepparton, arriving home about lunchtime on Saturday 25th Sep. This gave us about 6 days to unpack and clean out the inside and outside of both the mighty Navara and the fiver. It is great doing the show because Marg and I are forced to clean our rig and now it is all ready for our next sojourn.

The Leisurefest goes from Thursday to Sunday, but the Tow Ed sponsored Test Drive around the Sandown Motor Racing circuit is open from Friday to Sunday inclusive and between 11am to 4pm. On Thursdays the circuit is booked by Murcutt's Advanced Driving courses.
I left home about 7:30am on Friday morning and drove all of 10kms to Sandown. Upon arriving, I managed to get the security guard to get a key to unlock the gates to allow me into the pit area. I parked in the Pit area about 8am, within minutes, the rest of the team arrived (John, Julie, Lynette, Glen and Gerrard all from Tow_Ed - Education for those that tow, as well as Dick from Trulux and Graham from Winnebago. We had a photo session and also a segment of Whats Up DownUnder TV travel show was taped before we were let loose on the public. Dean Allen Craig interviewed Julie from Tow Ed and they walked passed my rig, so it may be on TV. Yippee.

About 11am, the public flooded in, well actually, a couple of patrons walked in and wanted to test drive caravans, Bugger!! So instead of sitting around like a 'stale bottle of piss', I would go and drive a couple of laps by myself. I love that. When a customer arrives wanting me, Lynette would call me on UHF and I would call into the pits and pick them up. I would then take them for usually 3 laps including going through the end of the front straight and through the chicane at a quicker speed then normal to highlight how the 5th Wheeler design allows the van to just sit behind the tug and tracks beautifully. One of the reasons that we bought a 5th Wheeler. If Phil or Chris from Trailblazer send them to me, I would go into 'Super Salesman' mode and I would pull up at the back of the pits and show them all the nooks and cranies of our rig. This always took a long time, but it was great fun.
Around 4pm, I would pull into the back of the pits and unhitch and lock up our rig for the night.

Saturday and Sunday were much the same. I probably took about 30 groups over the weekend.
One comment from one of the guys that I liked was: After the session with me and seeing through our fiver, I had taught him more in 30 minutes than he had learnt in the past year. That gave me a good feeling.

The format of the my 3 days was:
8:00am - Arrive at track and hitch up my rig, as I drove our tug home each night.
10:30am - Drivers briefing - max speed on track was 90kph, in pit area 30kph with hazard lights on etc.
11:00 to 4:00pm - Drive laps of the track, taking various customers with me.
4:30pm - walk over to the Trailblazers Rv stand and inform Phil about my day, tell him what a great salesman I am.
5:15pm - Leave Sandown for home.

I had an absolute ball and drove approx 150 laps of the track in the 3 days.
Thanks to John from Tow-Ed for all my photos of our rig in action.

Sequence shots coming into the esses at Dandenong Rd.

No. 2.

No. 3.

No. 4.

No. 5.

No. 6.

No. 7.

No. 8.

No. 9.

No. 10.

John was standing at the end of the esses.

So I aimed at him.

He stood his ground.

Then he zoomed back.

And away I go.