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Practice Week: May 26th - June 1st 2012
Race Week: June 2nd - June 8th 2012

TT News

One Week to Practice 21 May 2004

More and more MVs at the TT! Twenty-seven-year-old Italian Umberto Rumiano is riding an Italian F4 MV in the 1000cc Production race, making at least four such models being campaigned in the Island. Umberto doesn't believe in doing things by halves and has a ZX10 Kawasaki for the Formula One and Senior and a CBR400 Honda for the Lightweight.

Sponsorship for the races has now been finalized and includes motor sports marketers Duke backing the Formula One, the Hilton Hotel and Casino both Sidecar races, Scottish Life International the 1000cc Production, the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company the Junior and Standard Bank the Senior.

As a break from the noise and roar of the racing bikes, serenity will rule in the bay of Douglas, when a flotilla of Tall Ships will lie at anchor. They will make an imposing sight, particularly at night when it is hoped they will be floodlit.

The line-up for TT music will provide plenty of variety, with Top UK pop group Liberty X and 1960s band the Hollies at the Villa Marina. The same venue hosts "Talon the Best of the Eagles" and "Rumours of Fleetwood Mac". Meanwhile, the nearby Gaiety Theatre features "One Night of Queen" complete with with Stars in Their Eyes winner Gary Mullen.

Radio TT's race broadcasting this year stands to change, with Geoff Cannell dropped as anchor man for Manx Radio. His place is taken by freelancer Charles Lambert. Maurice Mawdsley retains his spot at Glen Helen, with the reins at Ramsey Hairpin being taken by former competitor Andy McGladdery. Meanwhile, Geoff Cannell and Steve Parker will report regularly for the Island's other local radio station Energy FM.

The Voxan café racer to be ridden by Frenchman Fabrice Miguet attracted much attention at the North West 200. Its low growl is a distinctive sound and the bike seemed to corner well. It is a vee-twin machine manufactured near the former French Grand Prix venue of Clermont-Ferrand. The last time a French bike was ridden by a French rider was a Peugeot in the 1924 Senior, so 80 years will be being rolled back by Fabrice.

Jim Redman will set off first in the Classic Lap of Honour, riding a 250cc six-cylinder Honda sent direct from the company's Hall of Fame in Tokyo. Next will be Phil Read on a 350cc Yamaha twin, then Tommy Robb (Matchless), Sammy Miller (500 Gilera), Michelle Duff (500 Matchless) and Charlie Williams (385 Yamaha). Richard "Milky Bar Kid" Quayle is also set to ride, a year after a hefty spill at Ballaspur ended his full racing career.

Form at the North West 200 may not have proved a reliable indicator for the TT, as the Irish meeting was dogged by problems which curtailed official practice on both evenings. Adrian Archibald was among those who technically didn't qualify, but was allowed to start at the back of the grid. He then showed all his talent with a marvellous dash to third in the opening Superbike Race behind Michael Rutter and John McGuinness.

A big celebration is planned to commemorate the Car TT Centenary in 2005. It is scheduled to take place from September 7th to the 12th next year. The Island's first motorcycle race was also held the same year on a course going south from Quarter Bridge to Castletown, then via Ballamodha Straight to Ballacraine, then the reverse way of the TT Course back to Douglas. The first "proper" TT took place two years later. Its start was at St. John's and utilized a 15-mile course featuring Ballacraine, Kirk Michael and Peel.

The first arrival at the TT Paddock pitched up nearly a fortnight before practice. Belgian competitor Patrick van Gils wasted no time moving from the North West 200 and soon after began fettling his Motorhuis Seppe Suzuki.

The TT Prize Presentation ceremonies return to the Villa Marina after two years at Summerland. The Villa has received a £15 million refurbishment, including the upgrading of the celebrated Royal Hall. The prizegivings will be on Monday June 7th and the second on Wednesday June 9th. The presentations for the 600cc Junior TT and the Senior TT will be made at the back of the TT Grandstand after the Classic Parade on Friday June 11th.

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