We had an early start as we wanted to motor down to Phillip Island, just off the south eastern tip of the Mornington Peninsula. The island is mostly famous for two things….firstly, the penguin parade (which we have seen on a previous visit) when the little Fairy penguins who have been out in the ocean all day, waddle back up the beaches each evening to their nests, and secondly….and MUCH more interesting to us “petrol heads”, the Grand Prix circuit where the Moto GP of Australia is held. No contest…sorry penguins!! LOL
We wanted to take a guided tour of the circuit, and as we arrived just after the morning tour had left, we first of all called in and booked for the early afternoon tour and then left the circuit to have a look around the island for the rest of the morning. At the far end of Phillip island is a place known as The Nobbies Centre, which is part of the Phillip Island Nature Parks. Amazingly, over 20,000 Australian Fur Seals live approximately one and a half kilometres offshore on Seal Rocks. During the early 1800s this seal colony was almost hunted to extinction, with the numbers decimated to just over 100. Today, the seals are a protected species and thrive in this very special place. There are some amazing boarded walkways with terrific views towards Seal Rocks and along the coastline. It was such a beautiful day and the sunshine was sparkling on the deep blue ocean water.
Later, we had a picnic overlooking Shelley’s Beach before making our way back to the Grand Prix circuit for our guided tour. We were very pleased that there was only one other couple taking the tour along with us…..so we were able to ask all of the questions we wanted! We were taken over to the infield, up the control tower, down the pit lane and briefly onto the track at the start/finish line. We also visited the corporate facilities which were being prepared for the next round of the World Surperbike Series which are taking place next weekend, and impressively were allowed onto the podium where the winners receive their trophies! Just think…next time the Moto GP is here, later in the year….Australian Casey Stoner will be standing on that top step!! Hahaha….Michael disagrees with that analogy…but as I am writing this blog…I have the final word!!