Since the early nineties when I first visited the Isle of Man to compete in the Ramsey Sprint as the ACU Champion I have had this desire to compete and ride the world famous TT course as a competitor. Even though I had the correct level of licence I was informed that at 42 I was to old to enter ! Since my return to racing things have moved on and strangely I am now young enough provided I can pass a medical ! The desire to go has never gone away so I felt must make the effort before its to late as I am not getting any younger !
My previously held national licence had now lapsed while I was not racing. In order to compete in the Manx Grand Prix I would require a National Licence. All I needed to do for the upgrade was to get signatures after each race so I could upgrade to the level of licence required, to get these signatures you have to finish ten races within 110% of the winners time and on the same lap. I returned to competitive racing in 2010 competing in The BSSO national scooter championship winning my class in my come back year. But unknown to me since my last licence had lapsed the powers to be at the ACU have split scooters and bikes apart so when I applied for my upgraded only the scooter section of the licence was upgraded this threw my plans for a ride at the Manx in 2013 into total disarray.
After this set back I gathered my thoughts together and decide that I need to effectively start again with regards to my licence upgrade.
I started out using my R1 but realised this was the wrong machine to achieve this. So I purchased an MZ250 and campaigned this at both BEMSEE and BHR meetings . The bike I purchased was slow and this made the task of upgrades a lot harder than I expected, I used this engine for 2013. I Then built a new reed valve engine for the 2014 season bucking the trend and advice. This has proved to be reliable and quite quick with my lard arse on board. Having more power has helped to make getting the upgrades a little easier but a succesion of gear box gremlins made it much harder than it should have really been . I stuck by my decision and battled away and eventually got the upgrades and now have the National level licence I need as my base entry level for the Manx Newcomers 2015.
I would not have thought so at the time but my first attempt for 1993 and my upgrade over the last few years taking a little longer than expected has helped me with the preperation for riding the TT course. There were no on board footage in 1993 , no Mike Hailwood Foundation newcomers weekends , no forums for you kind people to give advice to get me there and home safe and sound . These have all added to making this one ride I will never forget !
Getting there and competing will mean a lot to me, and even before I go I want to thank everybody from my wife and my sponsors and all of you who are just passing by in the paddock .
Thankyou all for the support .