TT 2001 Results
Info for Riders
TT 2001 Competitors
Who's Who at the TT
From Modelling to Race Team Manager
By Eva Marina
Wife of US TT Regular, Dwight Mitchell
Three years ago I was modelling for
an agency in Spain and going to the University, now I'm co-managing a
professional race team and a mother.
It was Thursday of race
qualification week and the day was sunny and warm. I had flown from Spain
to England, then on to the Isle of Man a few hours earlier to catch up
with the race team. As co-manager of Team USA I was quickly brought up to
speed and given the statistics on qualifications so far. We were trying to
qualify for the Senior race on this day at the famous Isle of Man TT and
had finally got the Penske suspension working correctly.
792 entries and only 80 of the fastest riders would qualify for this race.
Of course my husband Dwight Mitchell was determined to be one of them as
he put his leg across his motorcycle. After setting a blistering pace for
the first lap, he was on his second lap or the flying lap. This is where
you make time because you are doing over 150 mph when cross the
start/finish line and pass the lap timer with no pit stop.
timing my husband when we noticed he was overdue. I began to worry, for
the Isle of Man is no ordinary racecourse. Nestled on a quaint island in
the middle of the Irish Sea lies the world's most treacherous racecourse.
Conducted on a mountain circuit of ordinary roads, each 38-mile lap
consists of 220 curves with jumps, telephone poles, stone walls, cliffs,
and often no run off. The race is 226.5 miles in length and has claimed
many lives over its 94-year history.
Only a handful of Americans
attend each year. This is the world's greatest and oldest roadrace, which
has taken place every year since 1907. I immediately went to the race
office for any information and discovered that my husband had crashed
halfway around the course. Fortunately he was up and okay thanks to his
Vanson leathers, and Alpinestar protective gear. Welcome to the wonderful
world of motorcycle roadracing.
I always watch my husband with a
mixture of fear and excitement each time he's out on the track. I love to
watch him racing in his colour co-ordinated leathers. Although I know he's
an excellent racer, I never truly relax until he's back in the pits safe
and sound. It's a love/hate sort of thing. Watching a race and having
someone you love in a race are two entirely different things.
how did I get here you ask? It seems like only yesterday that I met my
husband while he was vacationing in Madrid. It was the winter of 1997. He
had just completed his first year of racing and had won the AMA Amateur
National Championship but had never mentioned it. In fact I had no idea my
husband raced motorcycles or was turning Pro the following year until a
few weeks later. I remember him telling me that if I had any reservations
about him racing motorcycles I should stop dating him now before our
relationship got to serious. He advised me that he thoroughly enjoyed
racing and had no intentions of stopping. I also remember him making some
off handed joke about motorcycles not getting headaches, to which I
promptly laughed and hit him.
Like most Spaniards I loved
motorcycle racing, and I even ride myself. I would travel to Jerez in the
south of Spain in the spring to watch the Spanish round of the World Grand
Prix championships. There are six in my family and we all ride and love to
watch motorcycle racing. When they found out he raced motorcycles they
immediately liked him. You know how people always say "when you meet the
right person you'll know it." Well that happened to us. I had been to the
United States many times for work but had never met anyone that interested
me. I never imagined I would fall in love with an American in my own
country. We were so perfect for each other. From motorcycles to Scuba
Diving we had everything in common. It was so scary because we were moving
very fast just like he races. After what some would consider a short
courtship we were married, and these have been the best times of my
When I first moved to the US to be with my husband I was
undecided on the continuation of my modelling career. Most people think
it's a glamour job, but it's very hard work. Since I was very good with
computers and liked motorcycles my husband suggested that I help him run
and manage the new race team. I agreed, and he taught me what I needed to
know and set me in motion.
So what does my job entail? Meeting with
perspective sponsors, proposal preparation, press releases, preparing
sales literature, public relations, trade shows, and website maintenance
Producing the team newsletter, spare parts procurement and inventory,
arranging team photo shoots, scheduling interviews, and expenses tracking.
Crew interviews, acquiring accommodations, licensing, insurance,
videographer, and umbrella girl for my husband when he's on the starting
On any given day I spend a large portion of my time on the
phone doing PR work and speaking with new perspective sponsors. We
contacted over 200 companies last year and found out that a large majority
was already in Motorsports advertising with NASCAR.
majority of non-factory sponsored racers, (called privateer racers) my
husband has a regular job. His company, Mitchell & Associates are an
IBM AS/400 and JD Edwards consulting firm. This supports us and allows him
to race with the aid of product sponsors but it's still very expensive.
The work is hard, but fun and without the seeming limitless
resources/money of factory backed teams we rely on volunteers like Wayne,
Clark, Garett, Ted, Ben, Rita, Danielle, Troy and Steve who help us get
the job done. They do it for the love of the sport and because they enjoy
getting involved. We can't thank them enough for all their tireless
efforts. We also formed the Team USA TT Supporters Club. It's a 400-member
club whose membership fees and donations help defray the cost of racing in
Europe. We also give out a yearly free trip to Europe and gifts with the
various levels of membership.
It wouldn't be feasible to run a race
team without sponsors. They help us financially, with product support,
marketing, and give you a mechanism for growing your team. Hindle Exhaust,
Elf Lubricants, and Factory Tuning help get the most out of the motors.
Sharkskinz bodywork and Dietlemier Motorgraphics make the bikes light and
beautiful, along with Race Tech, Penske Shocks, and EBC for suspension and
braking.So we are constantly seeking additional sponsors. Further
sponsorship is always being sought. When it comes to racing you never have
too many sponsors or too much money. You are marketing your team so you
need to perform, look good, have charisma, and above all be professional.
The qualities I used in my modelling career apply here.
For 2001 MV
Agusta have supplied the motorcycles and we are racing an F4 on Pirelli
Dragon Evo tires. MV Agusta is the most successful name in motorcycle road
racing and has won more championships than any other motorcycle brand. The
name MV Agusta evokes memories of a bygone age where nearly every race
winner, every world champion rode the same type of motorcycle - MV
Augusta. No other manufacturer has equalled their record of 75 world
championships, 270 Grand Prix victories and a total of 3027 victories in
the various different biking disciplines.
Now we add a beautiful
new baby boy named Bryce into the mix. Are you getting the picture yet? We
were very busy a few winters ago when Bryce was born. The first race of
the season at Daytona, FL was a mind-altering experience. Trying to work
with the team and care for the baby was an exercise in organisational
skills, and patience. I was fortunate to have fellow team member Garett's
fiancee Danielle with us at the time. At home we have a part time
babysitter that allows me to do my work, but she was not with us and we
had no idea how much additional work it would be. Well I can say one
thing, it was a learning experience and now years further on, we are still
working on getting it right. Everyone loves seeing Bryce at the track, and
the wives and girlfriends of the other racers are always volunteering to
Now that I am back to my normal size and modelling part time
we have designed two new promotional efforts. The first includes some
fellow models and myself making a swimsuit calendar with the team
motorcycles as the props in the background. There will be a mixture of
bikini shots and race shots on the calendar. The second is a behind the
scenes video of our team's efforts during the season. It will include
racing, pit shots, the modelling sessions, and footage from the motorcycle
shows. We are always seeking new ways to promote the team and our
In addition to racing we also try to give back to
society. We visit elementary schools, Garett teaches motorcycle safety
classes, and Dwight's a control rider and instructor for various
motorcycle race schools and Sportbike associations. When we were last on
the Isle of Man in June of 99 our US team was given a mayoral reception at
city hall by The Mayor and his wife. Everyone was very excited to see an
organised US presence.
The people at the Isle of Man are warm,
wonderful, and very helpful. It was a very festive occasion and one I'm
glad I was able to attend. But best of all our team won the ACU
International team award. This is awarded is given to a 3 person team not
affiliated with the ACU who complete the total distance of the race in the
shortest aggregate time, and there were 792 entries from 20 countries at
that year's races.
The past few years have been fun filled and
exciting. I can't wait to see what the next few years has in store for me.
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