For a new monthly edition of the Volunteer Spotlight, Motorcycling Australia (MA) sat down with Road Race Official Darren Auhl, whose dedication and love of the sport is something to be admired. Auhl gave us the inside scoop on his unforgettable experience in Spain at the Catalunya MotoGP, and what advice his gives to any newcomer of the sport.
What got you into volunteering?
I was sitting with a group of mates at Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit in 1991, it was feezing cold and bucketing down with rain and I saw these officials standing out there in the freezing cold. I turned to the boys and said ‘who would do that’ and then I thought to myself, ‘I can do that’. And it was as simple as that. I just thought ‘I can do that’ and from 1991 I signed myself up.
What’s your favourite thing about volunteering?
Teamwork. We’re all one big team and everyone relies on one another to do their job well for the safety of the riders and other marshals too.
Most memorable moment whilst volunteering with MA?
When the MotoGP went to 4-stroke era and I was at turn 1 at Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit, the noise of the bikes screaming past at nearly 300km was such an unbelievable sensation that will never leave me.
Best experience as a volunteer (best event etc.)?
Getting to the Catalunya MotoGP thanks to the help from MA staff, where so few Australian marshals go was such a great honour. I also got Jordi Torres to record a video message for my colleagues at the Catalunya MotoGP, which really helped show my Spanish colleagues that I was some guy who turned up to the races and from then on they welcomed me in to their team.
Best advice you’ve been given?
Enjoy yourself and be safe.
Also make sure you have the right gear to protect yourself from the elements. I’ve seen so many people get caught out by bad weather and catch hypothermia because they’re not used to being out in the elements.
Road race is definitely my preferred discipline. I have also worked in enduro events, but my real love lies with road race.
Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit because it’s just a beautiful track and location that is so conducive to great riding.
Jack Miller, Marc Marquez and Jordi Torres.
What 2018 event are you most excited for?
I’m looking forward to going to ASBK at Winton Motor Raceway, and also the Australian MotoGP at Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit.
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