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Isle of Mann TT,, anyone been there

Discussion in 'Racing, Motorsports, and Track Days' started by bsab20, Aug 9, 2007.

  1. HI
    I was thinking about going to the Isle of Mann next May 2008
    Anyone have tips on where to stay
    Best viewing location on thr track
    Whats it like is it worth the trip etc
    After that was thinking of going down to Birmingham as I understand that they have the National motorcyle museum which has many bikes on display

  2. I was there back in 2000, had a wonderful time :)

    I suspect that most race specific information I might have is well out of date. I can make a few general comments though.

    You can stay in houses or camp (camping is cheaper) and the house accomodation needs to be booked well in advance (or is even more expensive).

    You can't easily (or often at all) rent a bike to go to the TT races.

    You can't easily (or often at all) buy a bike and insure it in the UK, use it to go touring and then sell it. There are a couple of ways around that but not easily and not normally short term.

    The easiest way is to ship your bike over there with somone like Dave Milligans 'Get Routed' company and travel in a group, or give up on the bike idea all together... fly then ferry then take buses around the island (easy but you'll regret it!).

    If you haven't been to the UK before then you need to realise our currency doesn't go as far so living expenses will be higher.

    Travel Insurance is almost a necessity.

    Ummm that's about it really.

    oh... Daves Web site... http://www.getrouted.com.au/
  3. I'm not sure if there are still ferry tickets available for next year....
  4. make sure your travel insurance covers bikes and also check the cc limit. I had some which in the small print said up to 150cc which kinda ruled out the cbr thou I wanted to hire.
  5. I competed in 1990, it is a truly fantastic place. It is like the atmosphere of the MotoGP but for two weeks solid.
  6. bsab20,

    Yes, we were over there for this year. It was truly awesome, I think insane was a word I have used to describe it, in the best possible way of course.

    We have been planning this trip for 10 years and booked our ferry tickets and accommodation in October 2005 (being the centenary we knew it would be busy). Ferry is easy http://www.steam-packet.com accommodation a little trickier. Hotels were all booked out, camping was too hard (in other words couldn't be bothered taking the gear when we were going on to Italy afterwards and besides Practice Week was freaking freezing and the Sunday of WSBK Silverstone where it rained, saw very heavy rain on the IOM, I hate being wet) so I contacted Wembley Accommodation http://www.eventaccommodation.co.uk/sporting.htm who do all the official homestay for the event. They maintain a strict code and prices are set, in other words you don't get ripped off! http://www.eventaccommodation.co.uk/sporting.htm However accommodation is GBP30.00 per person per night (including breakfast). Note breakfast where we stayed was huge we could manage all day on it until dinner! We were placed with a family in Ramsey and the house was 100 metres from the track.

    Next step was to get to Liverpool, we flew into Manchester which is not far away and a train takes you directly from the airport to Lime Street station in Liverpool. The ferry terminal is not too far away.

    Places to watch from. You may have seen the videos and pictures, but I found that nothing prepared me for what I was going to witness, the terrain is steeper, the bikes faster - everything was just amplified! It was magnificent.

    Practice saw us watch twice from the Black Swan pub in Ramsey where one beer garden sees the bikes/sidecars come into Ramsey and Parliament Square, the other beer garden sees them exit the square pass the Seat dealership and scream up the road to May Hill and the Hairpin. Good beer, friendly people.

    We then ventured further afield to Braddon Bridge where we paid 1GBP each to sit in the churchyard (on seats) and watch - excellent value for money, however it made me feel like I was at a race track rather than a road race. Note - the coffee made by the local Church ladies was truly dreadful - I had to pour it out. In fact there was no decent coffee to be had on the whole Island!

    Next practise saw us at the bottom of Bray Hill. On video this looks like a mere nothing, yes it is fast, but Bray Hill is actually very steep. The bikes fly down here in top, hit the bottom of the hilll at the intersection, some scrape their bodywork (you can hear it) and see the scrape marks on the bitumen, they then go flat out up the next bit to Ago's Leap, pull a mono and carry on. Breathtaking. :eek:

    The first race we watched from the grandstand on the straight. We bought tickets through Duke Video at 50GBP each. Whilst it is the straight, it was really interesting seeing the starts, the pit stops and the scoreboard. Not to mention the podium presentations. I think it is worth to do this once. Note take a cushion or something to sit on the benches are freaking freezing!

    Next race saw us up at the Bungalow on the mountain. Note the Motorcycle Museum there is now closed! This is a great place to watch and you can wander all over the place, however the lack of buildings, etc doesn't give you the true impression of speed but it is still worth to do.

    Next we tried Ballaugh Bridge - one of the jumps. We struck it lucky and managed to get into a local guy's front yard. The view was amazing, the jumps incredible. The riders jump the bike and turn it almost in the air because on landing there is a stone wall just to their right. :eek:

    For the Senior we ventured to Quarry Bends where you can sit right next to the track with a piece of orange tape in front of you separating you from the footpath and the road. As they enter the bends they are heading straight for you - it was great.

    Other friends tried Cronk-y-vody and said it was fantastic, you can sit on a grass mound and the bikes pass just below your feet. One friend said it was a little unnerving as you felt like you could slip down the bank and onto the track! But worth to watch from as very fast.

    This is just a small sample of places to watch from. I don't think 10 years of attendance would see you cover it all. I had a photographer's guide from 2000 but a lot of the recommended viewing spots are now Verboten, and they seem to be trying to concentrate spectators along to major areas. It may be worse next year due to the fatalities at the beginning of the Mountain section in this year's Senior race.

    What we would do differently, take a bike or two next time, whilst the bus/electric rail etc are great and 40GBP for a 7 day ticket is okay, it takes a lot of planning and very early mornings (race week) to get to the spots I have mentioned in time for a good possie. But it was all too hard to sort a bike for this trip as we had other commitments afterwards.

    We would also stay in Douglas, as most of the night time activities take place there.

    Other friends shipped their bikes via TNT and found it very competitive. You may ask why we took the ferry when we didn't have bikes, simple we like ferries and the atmosphere with all the other riders on board was great. But you can fly over there as well.

    Was it worth it. YES. Would we do it again - YES, but probably not for a few years as the whole trip cost us a fortune.

    As Johnny O said it is like the atmosphere of Motogp for 2 weeks, but for this year - it was huge, so add every other motorcycle event to it as well. I don't think words can do it justice.

    The other thing we did that I found worthwhile was to buy some balcony tickets at Villa Marina on the Promenade for the night stunt riding - it was worth every bit of GBP5.00 to watch Christian Pfeiffer and we were not crowded, or hemmed in at all.