Manx GP. Report from Keith and Alan.
With our respective wife’s, Sheila and Nicky, we planned our 2016 Isle of Man trip last year, this was to make sure of accommodation and ferry space. The Manx G.P was from the 29th Aug - 3rd September. To play safe we both brought new bikes, Alan with his brand new Triumph Street Twin, with a revised seat, and me with my new, second hand, Kawasaki Vulcan. Both bikes went very well with no breakdowns.
The day arrived to depart from Worthing, of course being idiots we planned to ride nearly 300 miles to Liverpool during a Bank Holiday. We expected the journey to be bad but not as bad as it was. There was over a 70 mile traffic jam on the M6 so in the end it took us nearly 9 hour’s to get to our Hotel near the Albert Docks, to say we were shattered is an understatement. What my wife called me is not repeatable on a club website. However, we survived and landed in Douglas the next morning after a smooth crossing and soon found our lodgings.
Most days it was windy and cold, we were told that we could walk to the course from our digs but they did not say the roads were nearly vertical. I suppose they would be as Douglas is at the bottom of the mountain and the only way is up. It all ended well as we found a resident who had opened their back garden, which faced the racecourse. This was at ‘Sign Post Corner’ the resident provided seat’s, toilets, bacon sandwiches, cakes and tea all day at a fair price. We could see Michael Dunlop come down off the mountain and around our corner at about 100mph, quite a sight and the sound of his replica MV was something else. We saw all the races of the week at this corner and really enjoyed them.
On the days when there was no racing we toured the island. Firstly taking the steam train to Port Erin, then we rode to Kirk Michael, Ramsey, Peel and Jurby. Had the usual good meals and not so good meals in various pubs and café’s. Our last thrill was taking a horse drawn tram along Douglas promenade.
Finally the day to come home arrived and it looked as though it was going to rain but it kept dry all day. The traffic was easier but due to an error on my part we added another 30 miles to the journey. Again a few kind words of advice from my dear wife about what I could do with this shinny new bike.
It still took about 8 hours of hard riding but we arrived back in Worthing safely. It was a hard week for all of us but we did it, the girls did say that they will never do it again; I think for once I agree with them.
I attach a photo of the girls at the ‘Bungalow’ standing next to the Joey Dunlop statue; I choose this one because you all know our ugly faces; they are so much better looking.