How much does it cost to run a Moto2 team? Using the power of division, TwitGP's Mathematics Department worked it out to be €70.
Assuming there are 8,500 of you.
Which there are. So let's continue.
This particular adventure, entitled TwitGP Racing, occurred because we simply wondered how much it was costing Valentino Rossi to set up his own Moto2 team for next year. Respected/disrespected (delete as applicable) paddock insiders swiftly offered an answer:
@mattnroberts: “Herve Poncharal reckons about 300k but you have to pay for your own dinners in his team!”
@Spalders: “How long is a piece of string? IF you got accepted by IRTA, and IF you didn't have cash in from, or out to a rider, about €350k.” (Er, what's with all the “IFs”? This isn't make-believe you know.)
@ianwheeler: “I'll have some of what you're drinking. €600K minimum”
So even in the most expensive scenario, a TwitGP follower could still become a stakeholder in our team for less than the price of two tanks of gas. Frankly, even poor people could afford that - and just imagine for a moment WHAT A RIGHT BLOODY LAUGH it would be. Our very own ACTUAL Moto2 team, run democratically (where @TwitGP is more equal than others, obv). 8,500 people in a grandstand cheering on their very own bike. Or, as @Simon_Rossi46 tweeted, “we can all watch from the pit wall”. Dorna, you're going to need a new laminator.
Anyway, to business. We don't do job interviews because they're boring and people wear bad suits for them and then lie about their CVs. So in true TwitGP style we just let you follower-people choose your own jobs. After all, it's your team. And here's what you said:
Spectacularly, @Irish31769 told us “I'll be your corporate pilot”. Do you know why? BECAUSE HE FLIES F-16 FIGHTER JETS FOR THE US AIR FORCE. *swoon*. And his callsign is “Irish”. Yes, he has a callsign! We're pretty sure no other Moto2 team has an ACTUAL fighter pilot on their books. Advantage us. We feel the need, the need for Tweed.
@craigcpfcmiller tweeted “I'm a carpenter so I'm happy to set the garage up at the start of a race weekend” - thank you Craig. Let's hope our brave truck drivers @tony6r, @karimba32 and @Mart893 get there in time with all the gear for you.
We're going to have a 4-strong team of mechanics. Crew Chief will be @KatelynElders, a young lady at Loughborough University. "If you need an engineer I passed my first year of mechanical engineering" she said. Sounds good enough for us. She'll be ably helped by, and get this, no seriously, get this....Randy de Puniet's ACTUAL mechanic! Yes! We know! AMAZING! Chris Richardson, @crrs1970, is like a less-famous version of @alex__briggs, but seems just as cool: “all I can bring is the ability to fix crashed bikes quickly & Lauren's bunny suit!!” – get the man anything he wants.
They will be joined by @corner_botherer, who volunteered “to be the mechanic that takes the cockpit fairing to the crotch when the bikes pull into parc ferme”, and @oldfrat, who is happy to “be the guy who gets the blame when things go wrong”. So from now on, when something goes wrong, simply tweet “@oldfrat, this is your fault, AGAIN.”
Although if we did need to analyse crashes properly, @chopster123 is the man. He's training in forensics to be a scenes of crime officer – CSI TwitGP, anyone? *removes sunglasses* “you could say this computer, has crashed.” (that's enough Horatio impressions, Ed).
Talking of @Alex__Briggs, he said “I could do pit tours. I could say stuff like our engine is better than the others because its...Um.....ours!”, which would be several times better than the information you normally get on pit tours when you ask about the single engine rule.
And of course, behind every failed bus mechanic is a good woman. @Ellen_Briggs piped up with: “can I please be the mother of the rider? I promise to make ridiculous demands and hate whole countries because of something I heard.” Which is the kind of joke you only get if you realise one of the riders, who shall remain nameless, has a mother, who shall also remain nameless, who is reputedly a bit cranky. We'll hide the answer somewhere in this page.
Now to the juice. The brolly girls. Here they slink, one by one...cue the music, then whistle and cheer for:
@100XKAT (typical tweet: “shall I ride to Silverstone or drive?”)
@jt5252 (“I do silly things like get out of bed to watch bike racing in the middle of the night!")
@MiniB100 (“don't mind helping the rider on/off with his leathers too ;) ”)
@hells_bells_10 (“I look good in heels and can swish my hair!”)
@heidifibro46 (“Sign me up for Team Masseur!...” wink wink! “...the legit type mind.” Oh.)
@GinjaNinja1982 (“C'mon Nicky! Stick it to the Spaniard!”)
@KatyMilham (“@lorenzo99 please take me with you...”)
@kerrylroberts (“This evening will consist of beautifying and vodka sampling...”)
Oi, stop checking their profile pics. Perverts.
Several followers offered to help the riders.
@LeeSpelzini, the hypnotist, will be “team coaching/mind man”. We have to let him join otherwise he might trick us into thinking we're a big chicken.
@_doomngloom_ said: “seeing as how I'm a full time carer I could push an injured rider's wheelchair with precision...” ahh, how thoughtful, “...and shower the brolly girls.” OI!
Ooh look, another famousish person. It's Dean Ellison, aka @v3dean - former bike racer and brother of James Ellison, former GP and current BSB rider. AMAZING. Anyway, he said “I can swing some spanners and read data, put me down for an interview.” Abso bloody lutely. We need a good data technician. Know any? HAHAHA. De-dum-tish!
Other professionals include @amadams916, an ACTUAL Advanced Nurse Practitioner in Emergency Medicine, who will attend to all cuts and bruises with a nice cup of hot sweet tea.
Spanish journalist @JMGTamajon reminds us “you need a Spanish media journalist to speak with Ezpeleta's Dorna boys” - indeed we do, TwitGP has always worked very closely hand-in-hand with Dorna. Yep. Very closely. Ahem.
Team management duties were hotly bidded for. In the end we went for @Daveandaj (“I was the MD of a high tech laser manufacturer. Running a Moto2 team should be a doddle!” A LASER you say....? Hmm, lasery.)
@Poppys_Dad will have special responsibility for managing any fabrication we need, because he runs an Aerospace Machining company (“we can start tig welding a frame in the morning”), and he'll be assisted by @Picklejim who works in a foundry and can “source the aluminium castings and pressings for our own bespoke frame.” Cool. Not that we're taking this too seriously or anything.
Then of course, because this is TwitGP, things got a bit mad.
Celebrity window cleaner @billyrobson told us “I could clean the fairing screen and visors!!” That's right Billy, you could. But lose the ladders son.
@DIL23 wanted to be the “helmet polisher”. Look, it's not Viz.
“What jobs you got for a chicken farmer?” asked @Ali5633. “The wife's a nurse if that helps.” Er, um...it doesn't. Tell you what, we'll have a chicken coop in the paddock – every hospitality unit needs fresh eggs.
@matt_tarrant “I am a graphic designer who used to do a lot of farm work too. Must be applicable somewhere.” Er, um again...can you help with the chickens? Thanks. Meet Ali's wife, she's a nurse.
@SasquatchBob thought it was essential we had “a team rock band to keep spirits high in the evenings”. So rest assured, his Ozzy Osbourne tribute band, Ozzbest is on hand. (PS tangential joke – our current favourite tribute act is Amy HouseWine).
@nic_pollard said “I restore antiques & historical objects for a living” - so TwitGP Racing's vintage race bikes will always be in good order, while @BigDaddyBlue said “I work for a bookies, and would gladly price all the races up ;)” Brilliant – we can start our own black market spot betting scam here people. *Rides wide on lap 12*...
Now, as you know, TwitGP is hopeless at looking after money. So we're trusting the professionals, @ElaineBergman1 and @Doziej, to file accounts, crunch numbers, and cook books. They used to look after Capirossi's tax affairs so everything should be fine. They will be working closely with the amazingly named @rsturbobird, who describes herself as a “solicitor motorbike fan”. “I could be the team's solicitor and contract negotiator woop x” she said, sounding quite unlike any lawyer we've ever encountered.
“I work for Royal Mail so I'll look after all the fan mail that comes in!”, why thank you, @tinkerbarbie. You can be helped out by our other postie, @smelly_cat_lady.
We'll have a phalanx of photographers, @MikeEvstog, @ProNikon, @Cormac46, @Poggers83, @annie170768 and @Rhbusby; and they will be joined by a legion of people who wanted to be gum-chewers (jeeze, if you're new to TwitGP this one will never make any sense): @dave__46, @james_m_cookson, @billsbikechat, @Divefire, @paul_p_73, and @samsmedley.
Our follower in Zagreb, Croatia, @Kreso31, is going to be the pit-board man; @Hellsifumi is a statistician so will look after our results tables; the much-loved @DJMissfrenchie will be filling the riders' iPods with motivational tunes; and @lola2110 is offering to be our “business systems officer. No, I have no idea what I do either.” Speech pathologist @somedamnwriter was so excited she said “I'd leave my luxurious job even for just a cleaning job on the team”. Really? OK. Mop's in the corner.
Then we come to the essential jobs:
@DaniNeill86 will be making the tea. Why not fill her Twitter feed with your orders? It'll be hilarious. Milk, two sugars.
@Gi_Varotti “I can watch the race and keep everyone, here on Twitter, updated. Some1 gotta do this job, right?” - very good thinking. That just might catch on.
Finally, @vila1988, from his base in Valencia, dared to ask “I'd like to be @TwitGPpr's assistant”. Well, we asked her, and...she didn't reply. Instead she just shot us a scowl that emphatically said “I don't want any pesky assistants” then carried on painting the toenails at the ends of her lengthy legs. Sorry hermano. We tried.
So that's it. That's the whole team sorted. Every position filled. Yessiree.
Oh. Apart from one.
The final word goes to @jim68000, with his simple request:
“Can I be Uccio?”
Yes Jim, you can. You can be Uccio.
PS – NEWS ON RIDERS TO COME SOON. ACTUAL SECRET!