An early start after being well rested in my super comfortable hotel room!
A bit of breakfast down the hatch and the sun is already shining! The Start / Finish Line seems like the perfect meeting place…
To start of with a trip to one of the Island’s regular tourist attractions, The Laxey Wheel…
After the obligatory photo off we go to the mountain road.
This time however the road gets closed due to a collision. It actually happens twice today, 1 rider is unfortunately critically injured, 3 others are hurt coming off their bikes, and unluckily for them were only wearing tracksuits at the time!
The Isle of Man Constabulary Twitter Account shares this information live time and is really one of the greatest sources of news on the Island. Make sure you follow them for up to date info on all of the Island’s roads.
Due to this initial closure I got separated from the other 2 lads so I went exploring. The first stop I made was for suncream. Note to self – bring suncream.
With the necessities purchased off I went on a quick circle of the Island, not on the track though off the track and this is when I realised there is so much to see here. Obviously the track is the big draw, and rightly so, it is the most famous road race on the planet but there is an awful lot to see on this Island, and you will miss out if you don’t go off piste and do a bit of exploring!
I made it back to the Pits area for a late lunch, were I discovered a Manx Whopper from JK Catering. It is an 8oz Cheeseburger with bacon that is delicious! That’s all I can really say, other than get one!
Then the next essential – a SIM Card. I picked up a £20 SIM Card from ‘Sure.’ It comes with a few hundred minutes, thousands of texts and 10GB of Data. Here’s the kicker though, it cost £25 for the £20 SIM because it is a ‘TT Pack.’ What is that about! Other than the 25% price hike it isn’t too bad value, the Data on the Island was quick and having 10GB means you can browse worry free from Roaming Charges. Browsing, Videos, Audio all streamed quickly without issue.
After lunch settled I took the opportunity for another lap of the Race Circuit and the Mountain. This time I had the panniers off which makes going that little bit harder that little bit easier. Your lines can be that little bit tighter and you don’t need to worry about the boxes taking out a few cones or maybe even a TillDawn lamp. I can safely say today no cones nor lamps were destroyed, today, by me!
After a little injection of adrenaline it was back to the Grandstand area. Got the bike parked up and had a walk about. Food, Merchandise (Official and Unofficial), icecream, and bikes, it’s all happening here, an absolute hub of activity and tonight is a practice session so the place is starting to buzz. It is also free tonight to watch from the Grandstand so this is were I decide to stay. A quick walk about the John McGuinness Collection #McGuinessCollection and it’s time to take a seat…
So having watched my first Practice Session from the Grandstand I have a few good points of this spot and a few bad…
Good Points :
- Commentary. You know what is happening as it is happening and aren’t then reliant on a radio or internet connection.
- Seats. Comfort for the bum.
- Parking, nearby convenient, secure and free.
- Facilities and Food. Everything you need is less that 2 minutes away and accessible all the time.
Bad Points :
- View isn’t great – you’ll e able to see that yourself from the photos.
- Hard to get a decent photo – see point 1.
- Not too much action. It is a straight and start / finish line. With the staggered starts and fact that it is a practice session there isn’t that much going on other than fast starts.
Having done the Grandstand it is nice to have the commentary and the facilities however I’ll be elsewhere on the track for the next session.
After the racing ends I go on a tour of Douglas, the place is buzzing. Music coming from all the bars, the promenade is hiving. Bikes everywhere, bikers everywhere, it is so easy to see why people come back here year on year.
Isle of Man TT 2016 : Practice Day 30/05/2016 : Gallery :