Hi Everyone!

I'm Lauren Carter and Crash.net has asked me to do a column about life with my British Superbike boyfriend, Sean Emmett. Hopefully you'll enjoy my column which will bring a different angle to bike racing and my life with Sean, which is never boring!

During the 2006 BSB season, Sean will be riding for 'Ipone Oil' so look out for him on a black and white Kawasaki.

Where do I start? It seemed like the winter would never end! But finally next weekend will be the start of the 2006 season at Sean's favourite circuit, Brands Hatch, and the beginning of another exciting year.

As you know, if you have been following the series, Sean has had a couple of disastrous seasons. There have been incidents with team owners (getting sacked a couple of times), the taking of a bike in exchange for his owed wages! (which we never received) and the famous last corner wave at Thruxton, which will never be forgotten!

Last year was one of his worst. Sean smashed his elbow (top and middle picture) at Graham Hill Bend, Brands Hatch, whilst qualifying for the first race of the season. It wasn't until I pulled Sean's leathers off after he finished the session and blood was pouring everywhere that we realised he had opened his elbow up. He had to have 15 stitches and an ice pack on at all times. He still raced the next day though, managing a 4th and 5th.

We went to St. Peter's Hospital the next day and they couldn't see a break in his elbow in the X-ray. So Sean continued to ride but his results were getting worse, his elbow became infected with all the sweat from riding and he was in constant pain. So we went back to the hospital and they did another set of X-rays. This time they showed up a fracture in the elbow, apparently the vibration from racing was opening the break up. Sean had an operation the following week and the doctor told us his elbow fell off onto the operating table and he had to pin it back on! By the time the elbow was getting back to full strength the season was over and yet again another bad year.

This year the team did not have time to test abroad in Almeria so they made a last minute decision on Wednesday morning to do the afternoon test at Mallory Park, as the weather was not looking good for this weekend's test at Snetterton. So we drove up to get there for midday and Sandrine (Michael Rutter's partner) picked me up from the circuit to spend the day with her because it was too cold to watch! We get on really well as I met Sandrine in my first year with Sean, when he was Michael's team mate at Renegade, so we've known each other for a while now. Its always great meeting up with people from racing as you don't see them for about 6 months sometimes when the season's over so we had lots to catch up on!

When I arrived back at the circuit it was freezing and Sean was still out on track with some privateers and the Hawk Kawasaki guys. Because it was so cold the track temperature was low, so no one was doing the times that they would be doing later on in the year. But Sean said that he had some good sessions and felt that the bike enabled him to run in 'hot' in the corners, so he was able to carry a lot of corner speed and the bike gave him confidence in the front end, suiting his riding style. They also worked out what settings they needed for the BSB test at Snetterton this weekend, so hopefully it should all go well if the weather holds up!

This year he has so much to prove so fingers crossed!

Away from racing, we've just got back from a two-week holiday in Barbados where our friends got married on Valentine's Day (pictured). 42 guests attended the wedding and as a present we went on a catamaran for an afternoon and swam with turtles, which was amazing. We also tried out some Jet Skis, as usual Sean could not resist showing off and fell off - Ha Ha!

So I hope you've enjoyed my column so far! Will keep you up to date with the goings on in the paddock! Personally I can't wait...

Lots of luv,

Lauren x