As Spain made a clean-sweep of the GP titles this year, it seemed a good idea to invite Moto2 champ Pol Espargaro and Moto3 winner Maverick (yes he really is named after a character in Top Gun) Vinales.
UPDATE: The Superprestigio class is purely for GP road racers. It seems they don't want some 'unknown' dirt track or supermoto riders spoiling the party.
Thanks to Kenny Noyes, himself a Moto2 racer and a former US national dirt track champ, four British DTRA riders are also competing on the night, and they're just about the most exciting riders we have. Alan Birtwistle, Tom and Tim Neave (SB10 cover star) and schoolboy Ollie Brindley qualified to compete through their performance at November's Dirt Track Festival, at Motorland Aragon, Spain.
As I understand it, Ollie will race in a junior class, while Alan, Tom and Tim will race in the Open, support class. We've seen these riders progress for the last few years and they've all put in a massive amount of time and money, racing and practising anything and anywhere. They're all lovely fellas, obviously the cream in the UK and all three have flown to the US to race, and in many cases, beat the best flat track amateurs in their class over there.
The bikes they will be racing are 450s in DTX spec but on 17 or 16.5in wheels, not the regular dirt track 19s, with Michelin supermoto wet tyres (not sure what Ollie is racing).
US journalist and columnist Mark 'The Backmarker' Gardiner pointed out, on a US website, that you can hardly have an event called Superprestigio Dirt Track and not invite the current best dirt tracker in the world, the GNC's undisputed #1, Brad Baker. The Spaniards saw sense and sent him an invite.
I saw a tiny clip of Brad practising on 17s at the Mt Salem indoor track. The unfamiliar tyres and wheel size was the only question mark in his mind about wether he could smoke these fancy Yooropeens, and he looked incredible.
I've just spoken to Anthony at the DTRA and he says Baker will be in the support class with the British riders, but hopefully there will be a best of the best where the best of the Open race the best of the Superprestigio class. Otherwise, it's a long way for Brad to fly to race in a support class.
If any road racer beats Brad Baker on a dirt oval it will be a hell of an upset. G
Ollie BrindleyPhotos by Dutch Brothers Racing