After the thrills and excitement of the Centenary TT, attention in the Isle of Man now turns to the Southern 100 then to the annual Manx Grand Prix, practising for which commences on Saturday August 18th.
Entries have closed and show an individual rider total of 283 spread across the nine racing classes. Many competitors have two rides, particularly doing the Senior-Junior combination in both the main event or Classic sections.
Many riders who took part in the recent TT are eligible to ride in the MGP Classic, and include four former TT winners – Chris Palmer, Ryan Farquhar, Ian Lougher and Daniel Sayle.
Of those, only Palmer has previously recorded an MGP Classic win – last year’s 500cc Classic in which he rode Fred Walmsley’s Manx Norton. This year he elects to ride a G50 Matchless from the same stable, having satisfactorily tried out a similarly-handling 350cc 7R AJS in the Pre-TT Classic meeting on the Billown Circuit.
Lougher had a fairly successful TT on Stobart Hondas and will stay with Japanese mounts for the Senior and Junior MGP Classic – though likely to find the Classic versions a very different proposition, being at least 50mph slower.
Ryan Farquhar had a disappointing TT and will seek to get back on the winning trail with a 350cc Honda and a 500cc Paton. Back with a 500cc Paton will be last year’s runner-up Steve Linsdell, who will be more at home with the four-stroke twin than he was trying to control the brute power of the 500cc four-cylinder two-stroke model at the TT. Making his MGP debut will be Steve’s son Ollie (19), who won a main race at the North West 200 in May.
Having won three Sidecar TTs as passenger to Dave Molyneux, Daniel Sayle will continue his promising solo career with another ride in the Ultra-Lightweight race aboard a 125cc RS Honda run by Crossan Motorcycles, long-time sponsor of five-times TT winner Robert Dunlop.