The Gooch’s A-Z on essentials for watching a motorsport event

Only a couple more weeks to go, just under two, until the South African Motorsport calendar gets the green light and starts off with a bang. The crème de la crème of events, the Historic Internationals, taking place at Zwartkops on the 2nd and Kyalami on the 9th, gets enthusiasts hearts hitting their proverbial heart rate limiter and their blood filled with 102 Octane. As a track side supporter there is no better feeling that have your ears deafened by the roar of thoroughbred motors, sights filled with the beauty of classic racers, their scent being overtaken by the smell of burnt rubber and hot brakes and their taste buds tingled by a great friend of South African sports lovers, the beloved boerie roll and a cold tall one.

To add value to your viewing and to ensure you gain the maximum from your ticket entry, here are a couple of preliminary must haves before setting up your seat placing for the day:

Motorsport has great spectator valueA – Alcohol: Race days always welcome fans with baking heat for the first part of the day, ending off proceedings with a Gauteng afternoon thunderstorm. It is prevalent the drinking is done and dusted before the thunderstorm takes place as spectators should make full use of the mad scramble to pack up belongings and seek shelter in order to sober up.
B – Boerewors:
As with any sporting event the day would not be complete without gorging oneself on such a delight.
C – Chick:
Now you can either bring your bird, bint, handbag, handbrake, squeeze or lady along to the event and hope she remains interested for most part of the day. However if she is not into motorsport, rather leave your chick at home and bring a mate along, your money will be well spent.
D – Deck Chair: A massive investment for the sport lover out there and can be a versatile asset when planning on watching motorsport, cricket, rugby or soccer. Is very easy to stow away and may come in use when the leader of the opposition party divorces you due to your sport loving antics receiving more attention than her, leading to her packing up and taking the leather suite couch with her.
E – Envelope:
You may wonder why, but the night before a race meeting do yourself a favour and get out an envelope, put your acquired tickets in it, seal it and clearly print your name on the outside of the letter. This is to ensure you do not forget the tickets when leaving the next morning, make sure all the tickets you have purchased are together, by marking the envelope this will confirm to your wife, girlfriend and kids that this is in fact not money for them to spend and by safely storing them away will not allow your better half to porn them off to ensure she redeems her families savings and make sure you stay at home to mow on the lawn.
F – Funnel: This will prove to be a great way to spend time in between races and on warm up laps. A beer funnel can be purchased or home-made. To get the most out of the day’s racing, you can have bets amongst yourselves about who will win, who will crash and whenever the driver you select makes a passing move or gets overtaken has the honours are funneling down a beer.
G – Gaviscon: Refer to 'Indigestion' below....   but make sure you have a few samples of Gaviscon (or Enos, or a "regmaker" on hand).
H – Hats and caps: Massively essential. If you are going to be sitting on track side for the duration of the day, a wide brimmed umpire’s hat will do the trick and protect you back like a batmen’s ball box safe keeps the important bits. If you are going to be browsing the pits, rather stick to the traditional baseball style peak cap to avoid looking like a social misfit with the umpire’s hat. The advantages of the peak cap is that your favourite drivers like Robbi Smith, Paolo Cavalieri, Jaki and Ian Scheckter, Graeme Nathan and Sarel van der Merwe, to name a few, can sign it for you.
I – Indigestion: this point is to ensure you enjoy the entire day and do not begin to feel under the weather in the afternoon just before the thunderstorm as essentials need to be packed up and sobering up to take place. Indigestion can be the killer of all good events, therefore make sure you pack a box of Gaviscon. If you feel that heart burn starting to kick in, pop one and watch it work wonders.
J – Jackets: The Gauteng thunderstorm has the ability to throw many unwelcome surprises. Firstly we can never assume how long the shower will last for, and the last thing one would want is to be left feeling cold and wet on their equally wet deck chair. In addition the Gauteng thunderstorm has the ability to chuck down golf ball size hail stones, a jacket will at least provide some form of protection.
K – Klippies: any good motorsport enthusiast will know that one’s cooler box is not sufficiently packed if it does not have a bottle of Klipdrift and a two litre Coke. What’s more the C of our A-Z list was taken up by chick, warning supporters of their potential to ruin a race day. Therefore if you are bringing your own braai and drink, do not forget to pack these in a well iced cooler box. Klipdrift and Coke also as the advantages of not making one feel like they have eaten nearly all of the Albany factory, however a downside to this favourite South African drink is that it may make one to feel the need to ‘moer’  their own mate who is supporting another driver, or a fellow spectator who mocks the size of their braai.
L – Labour: The worst thing about going out to an event and bringing with you the entire kitchen sink of supplies, is cleaning them up. Bearing in mind the amount of funneling, Klippies, boerewors and sun you have sustained over the course of the day, the last thing one feels like doing is tidying up and packing away. It is therefore a good idea to bring along some form of labour. Whether this is one of your own children, or a friend’s, your domestic worker or gardener who in no doubt will be thrilled to be joining in on the day’s events, whatever route you choose will be money for a ticket entry well spent.
M – Money: Probably one of the more important essentials to bring along. Half way through the day you may run out of beer due to the immense fun of funneling, you cannot kill the mood by postponing this game due to lack of supplies. In addition there is always the mass selection of memorabilia that is available for purchase, some of it real, most of it fake. Lastly, if the Gauteng thundershower does not make an appearance, this will lead to the drinking to continue and not much sobering up. Therefore keep enough money on you for a KFC family meal, which you will be able to hand over to Metro’s finest, should the opportunity present itself.
N -  Note Pad: Now why would you need a note pad at a motorsport, or any sporting event for that matter? With the various events taking place around you, keeping track will be difficult. In addition obtaining a signature from one of your racing hero’s present the issue that you don’t have anywhere for him to scribe on and anything to ink his personal gesture with. Score keeping in terms of who selected what and who needs to funnel what, must be effectively jotted down and recorded.
O – Opener: Before setting off make sure a quick recon is carried out on which refreshments require a bottle opener and which have twist off caps. If this step is missed other means such as lighters, bottle on bottle or hitting the top of the bottle on the edge of a rock or fence will suffice. However there are some who can open the cap with a lighter and some who cannot. Those who have not mastered the technique will resort to smacking the top of the bottle on a hard surface with an edge. After a few Klippies this may end in a disaster, therefore rather pack a bottle opener.  
P – Program or paper plates: It is quite essential to purchase a race program at the front gate. This normally costs a little more than R20.00, if its double than this, blame the mine strikes that have caused social unrest within our country, therefore decreasing foreign direct investment and increasing the cost of living in South Africa. Many believe boerie rolls and paper plates do not mix well. Standing with a paper plate while eating your traditional wors, packed into a stale roll that is drenched in tomato sauce and mustard is similar to arriving at your in-laws family get together in your under pants. On the contrary, walking around with sauce steins on your favourite motorsport shirt makes one look like a utter dough nut. If you like girls and are keen to chat some up, pack paper plates, if you don’t like girls then leave the paper plates behind and pack more sauce. You might as well stand around grandstands in your underpants then. 
From the 'Drivers Seat'Q – We are a racing workshop at the end of the day, and it is pretty impressive that we have come up with words for nearly every letter in the alphabet. However Q has us scratching our heads like most members of cabinet at a budget presentation, therefore we decided due to Rome being built in a day, some short cuts were taken, we will do the same and move on.
R – Radio: The PA systems located around a circuit transmit commentary that makes the speakers sound like they are trying to convey the message from a Taliban’s toilet. It is horrific and in actual fact drowns out the amazing sound of the racers going flat chat around the circuit. All the PA system emits is squeaks and bangs, with some snorting here and there, hence the Taliban toilet connotation. If you keen to hear some decent race commentary take a lekker radio along and tune into the track FM station. 
S –  Suntan lotion: No matter which portion of the track you will be stationed or roaming, put some sun block on to protect your delicate skin from South Africa’s harsh rays. You thought indigestion is a nightmare, most South African circuits can leave you with third degree burns and a hangover, not pleasant!
T – Tracksuit: The climatic situation positioned over a race circuit would have NASA confused. One moment it is boiling out and you like our Russian friend Alex/ Rusky/ Mother Russia who enjoys opening and taking his shirt off, as he believes he is beautiful, to sun bathe his soviet war torn nipples. Next moment it is pouring with rain and delivering cricket ball size hail stones to your head, car or the Russian’s nipples. Ensure some warm clothing is packed as sun stroke, mated to hypothermia and a hangover is definitely not pleasant.
U – Umbrella: Although you will look like a pansy walking around with your mom’s brolley that depicts corporate branding of companies that no longer exist, one thing you must never be shy of is being comfortable and protected from all extremes.
V – Vest: If you are a closet wife beater and wish you show off your rippling muscles. Don’t pack on if you a walking lightning director, otherwise you will provide more track side entertainment than Dutchman Dave’s wife trying to unhitch the Venter from the Cortina while showing off some healthy butt crack.
W – Water: Like sun tan lotion and the need for warm clothing, water has the ability to hydrate the body and hold back a nasty hang over. It is advised to have a healthy amount of stock, although the thundershower will sober one up, chugging down a few litres of Valpre’s best will do wonders for your drive home and increase your chances of avoiding Metro’s polite officers.
X – Xtinguisher: Okay, we cheating here a little too, however a little risk management can a long way in becoming an instant hero among the racing faithful, or can save a lot of face if an instant blaze erupts by your braai. Pity that chap who started the St Francis fires didn’t have an ‘Xtinguisher’ on hand, sure many people missed not visiting their usual holiday destination. 
Y – Yearbook: We pretty sure you have heard of the phrase used by 5FM DJ Roger Goode, FOMO. This clever four letter phrase relates to one’s ‘Fear of Mission Out’. Any good motorsport enthusiast will be suicidal upon being informed of a racing event that took place, while they were house bound and ordered to carry out weekly garden maintenance. It is advise to jot down important dates for the 2013 Motorsport calendar, especially the historic racing series. The all new Evolution 2 Motorsport Batmobile is a racing car not to be missed. In addition over the course of this year the team will be rolling out exciting new racers, such as the replica Schnitzer Group A BMW 635csi, Farouk Dangor’s beautiful original Speedy Car Sales E30 BMW M3 touring car – formerly a car that raced and won the BTCC and Robbi Smith’s awesome E30 BMW racer that is sure to raise a few eye brows. 
Z – Zest: Be sure as drawing up to a track’s main gate to either purchase or show your ticket before granted entry, that you are fresh and fired up for the day’s proceedings. The fans are the people who make the day an overall success. Bring flags and signs showcasing your preferred team and driver that you will be backing. This type of rivalry and banter is what gets everyone going. It motivates the drivers not to let their supporters down and makes every cent spent on an entrance ticket worth the money spent.