AMA Superbike: Barber Motorsports Park, Alabama

Return of the Smile

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Barber....the smiles return.

It's amazing what a visit to a real road course will do. From my viewpoint, at Daytona, the road races actually come second, and the teams always look like they can't wait for Saturday night to arrive so they can start packing up to leave. But at the beautiful Barber Motorsports facility, my wanderings around the pits were infused with happiness emanating from the various pitlane race teams. Yes, big grins, smiles and laughter.

The weather was beautiful, the steel spider sculptures were casting their odd shadows over ranks of parked renta-Porshes waiting for their turn at track time again. Birds were happily chirping in the air and bikes were on the track. For a moment I just stopped and looked around at the fans, their enthusiasm and smiles reflected by the teams who eagerly answered questions, riders were happily signing autographs and mixing it up with folks clinging to the wire fence that separates fans from the "work zone." This is what makes motorcycle racing the joy that it is. The fact that everyone who is here is part of the experience. The riders, the machinery, the food and drink vendors and the fans, combined with perfect weather, made this weekend the smiling antidote to Daytona. At Barber it was clear that season was under way at last.

Sound off! What's your favorite aspect of spectating at a motorcycle race?

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