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Department of Economic Development releases further details of proposed Manx Grand Prix Festival race programme

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

The Department of Economic Development has released further details relating to the recent proposals aimed at redeveloping the Manx Grand Prix Festival from 2013 onwards. These new proposals will see the event focus on motorcycling nostalgia as well as providing a training ground for future TT riders, newcomers to the Mountain Circuit and existing MGP riders.

The race programme being proposed includes three races for classic machines and two further races for modern day bikes. It is designed to ensure that competitors enjoy the optimum amount of track time whilst at the same time reducing the impact on local businesses and residents by maximising road closure opportunities at weekends and the August Bank Holiday.

These proposals are also designed to ensure competitors receive increased value for money whilst delivering an event that will generate a greater economic benefit, commercial revenues and media coverage, ensuring its long-term viability.

It is proposed that practice for the 2013 event will commence on Saturday 17 August, with the opening untimed free practice session starting at 18.20hrs. Timed practice will begin Monday 19 August at 18.20hrs, continuing through the 20, 21 and 22 August at the same start time.

Timed practice will again take place during the day on Friday 23rd August with a further session for the classic machines and newcomers in the modern classes due to get underway at 10.30hrs. The proposed race programme itself will open on the same day with the four lap 350cc Classic Race scheduled to get away at 14.00.

Saturday 24th August’s proposed race programme features the Lightweight Clubman’s TT Race for 650cc TT Supertwin specification machines followed later in the day by the 500cc Classic Race, with both races to be held over four laps of the TT Mountain Course. The 26th August, Bank Holiday Monday, will bring the curtain down on the race programme with the Supersport Clubman’s TT Race in the morning and Classic Superbike Race in the afternoon.

It is planned that each of the three race days will also include a closed road Parade Lap, with the Vintage Motor Cycle Club Rally, a Lap of Honour for former TT and MGP competitors and the Yamaha Classic Racing Team all taking part during the event.

Entries for all classes will be open to any rider with an ACU national license or equivalent with a maximum of 90 starters allowed per race. Entry fees for the 2013 event will be free to all competitors with the cost being covered by generating commercial income streams and by making budget efficiencies with the newly defined festival.

The Lightweight and Supersport Clubman’s TT Races will be run to existing TT technical regulations, with dispensations given to allow older machinery to enter. The regulations for the Classic races will be drawn up in due course and a final draft of the regulations for all classes is expected to be released by the end of August 2012.

Both Clubman’s TT Races will also feature a number of scholarships, which will be awarded at the end of the event by an expert panel of judges, which will see young riders offered a guaranteed place in the following years TT Races as a junior member of one of the TT’s leading professional teams.

Any previous TT or MGP rider will be eligible to take part in the Clubman’s classes, provided they haven’t qualified to race in the TT during the previous two years and have not lapped faster in race conditions than the new upper speed limits of 118mph for Supersport and 108mph for Lightweight classes.

The Department hopes to attract existing MGP classic bikes riders, contemporary TT riders and other classic specialist from around the world to compete in the three Classic Races. It is hoped that these races will over time become the most prestigious set of classic motorcycle races in the world attracting leading classic racing teams and machine owners from around the world. The Department has been pleased to have already received significant positive interest in the proposals from classic competitors and owners of classic racing motorcycles.

All three Classic Races will feature ‘sub classes’ to ensure riders compete against each other on a level playing field in terms of their machinery specification. These sub classes will be used to determine the awarding of trophies and replicas, with current day TT riders not being eligible for replicas. Further consultation will take place to determine the detail of the various sub class eligibility.

Teams and competitors wishing to register their interest in receiving draft regulations should do so by e-mailing Interested parties will be able to contribute to the production of these new regulations.

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