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Thread: A quick trip to the TT

  1. #1
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    A quick trip to the TT

    Just a short ride report on this years TT. I used to live there for about 5 years and have visited most years since. This year I was supposed to be going with my dad plus a mate and his dad. Due to injuries and illness everyone else dropped out so I ended up going on my own, which meant a very last minute homestay booking.
    I always go roughly the same dates - around Thursday of Practice week to Monday or Tuesday of race week. That guarantees the superbike weekend and gets me home before the wedding anniversary!

    As I was doing homestay and only for a few days I decided to take the RR for a bit of fun (and after spending the previous week on the GS in Scotland I fancied a change). Packed nice and light and set off for Heysham, which is so much easier now they have built the bypass around Lancaster. Despite the numbers apparently being down this year, if anything they packed the bikes even tighter than normal. Being on my own I got chatting to a couple of Belgians on the Ferry over a pint. It's amazing that no matter how smooth the crossing is, and it really was super smooth, there's always sounds of someone throwing up in the toilet!

    IMG_2247 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2249 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2251 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    I arrived at the homestay in Onchan which, as usual, was super friendly. I asked the guy if there was a key for coming back late and he said they never bother locking the door, but if by chance it ever is, the key was just under the mat lol. Despite this, the guy on the Harley stopping there still had a huge chain and disc lock around his bike every day haha. The homestay was just around the corner from signpost, and thursday practise had started, so I popped round there to watch. It’s not a particularly fast part of the track, but even so, the first time a bike comes past it shocks you with its speed and noise - just awesome! Got chatting to an aussie who had just got in from Ronaldsway and didn’t know what day it was!

    Walked down to the Terminus pub for a billy no mates beer and food - that’s when I realised how much quieter it was than normal as there were loads of seats available outside where it’s normally packed.

    IMG_2291 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    Woke up on friday to see there had been a bit of rain and it was misty. I decided to head out for a lap in the hope that the roads would dry by the time I got to Ramsay. It turned out to be perfect timing! The roads to Ramsay were quiet, then when I got there it was full of bikes waiting at the bus station, presumably for the weather to improve. There were fog warning signs and I almost decided to just take the coast road back to Douglas but when up the hairpin anyway….to find the weather was absolutely fine as it was just clearning. I had the mountain to myself apart from a van and two other bikes on dry roads - perfection!

    IMG_2297 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    Stopped for a drink at the Creg and then had a wander around the paddock, before heading into Douglas quay for a proper lunch of queenies at the Little Fish Cafe. Food is the one thing that’s really improved in Douglas over the past 20 years, although you have to hunt out the decent places during the TT as so much of it is just cheap crap burgers.

    IMG_2300 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2301 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2304 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2307 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2313 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    Saturday was raceday. I’d scouted out a few decent spots and settled on Crosby Leap, about half a mile past the pub. Good spot as the bikes are on the back wheel at high speed. Got there for 10am but there were a few delays due to mist on the mountain, then an incident in the sidecars, meaning the roads re-opened at 8:45pm - that’s a long time to be stuck in a hedge!

    Click for video:
    IMG_2444 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    Racing was good though - I was gutted for Harrison after his retirement, but he got his rewards later in the week. Popped over to a Port Erin to visit a mate that has just moved there - ended up having a BBQ and playing Cards against Humanity - good lord that’s a brutal game!

    Sunday was a scorcher. Did the Simon Andrews legacy lap, which is always an amazing atmosphere.

    IMG_2512 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    Popped along to the car and bike museum before heading to the south which has some stunning views away from the crowds. Had an obligatory ice cream stop at the Calf and then back via Marine Drive.

    IMG_2519 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr


    Guy Martin wall of death bike

    IMG_2522 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2523 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2525 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2529 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2531 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2534 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2546 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2554 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2563 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2569 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2578 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2581 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    IMG_2588 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    Monday was an early start back on the ferry and home.

    IMG_2595 by Dave Wrightson, on Flickr

    All in all a great trip, helped by amazing weather. Quite happy on my own, being able to just go where and when I wanted, and you always get chatting to people anyway, probably more so in fact. It was definitely quieter this year though for some reason, but already booked up to go next year again.

  2. #2
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    Thanks for posting. Racing this year was a belter - as was the weather. Interesting that you felt it was a lot quieter this year. Still a lot busier than the last time I went in the mid 90’s!

  3. #3
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    Enjoyed that
    If I am ever on life support - Unplug me......
    Then plug me back in..........

    See if that works .....

  4. #4
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    Thanks for posting, must get there sometime again!
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  5. #5
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    Sounds like a perfect TT trip, haven’t been for a few years no, but will return.
    Edited because I cannot type

  6. #6
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    Enjoyed that...brought back a few memories.....

    The last time I was there was in 2016. It was quite busy in places but not mega busy, and I was staying on Douglas prom' which I guess is as lively as it gets. It was easy to get around, the roads weren't mad packed, and it was easy enough to get a drink/eats in the pubs.

    I wasn't there (say) twenty years ago so can't really say if the attendance has dropped off.

    Has it ??

  7. #7
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    Great mini report giving a good insight into the TT.

    Wife and I are trapped on the Island after the ferry was cancelled due to the weather yesterday. I can't think of many better places to be stranded for an extra day and night.
    Anyone venturing across to future events...I'd heartily recommend signing on a marshal for at least one session. It gives a different look at the event, gives something back and you often get to spectate (albeit with the 'risk' of getting very involved if the shit hits the fan) in some special places. Only been coming across for the last 3 years (plus a Sagalout length trip in 2012) so no idea about visitor numbers 20-30 years ago but the numbers have steadily risen over the last 10 yrs according to surveys.

  8. #8
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    Great piccies Dave and yes,I thought it was quieter than usual,have been going over since 1979 and took the easy route of flying from Luton this year!! Definately a hot one this year and,of course,record breaking racing,how the hell they can lap at over 135 mph is beyond me.I stay with friends in Ramsey all week and it's always good to go back.

    All the best

    Kimbo

  9. #9
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    Thanks, a great RR and you had the correct tool for the job.

  10. #10
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    Great read.
    Missed it this year as we did the NW200.
    Already booked for TT2019 from Liverpool.
    We usually stay at Low Balacottier Campsite... 10min walk to Hilberry and can take back way to Douglas when roads are closed.
    See you there...
    Can't miss me...

    Sent from my London Taxi

  11. #11
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    Cracking pictures...
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