Closer to the hedge

Trip Summary

Name: Isle of Nan TT
Destination: Isle of Man
Distance: 60 kms (37.7 miles)
Vehicle: Mobility Scooters

Trip Diary

Tea and an almond slice
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Closer to the hedge

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Closer to the hedge

Within a mile or so it became clear the mountain had the upper hand. Battery indicators started plummeting towards the red zone and average speeds were dropping to around 3 mph. When some of riders at the back reported being overtaken by a confused woodlouse we knew we were in trouble.

Eventually the mountain claimed its first victim. The “Townmaster”, which had set the pace on day one could not cope with the incline and was struck down with an overheated electric motor. Camaraderie is high among TT racers and no one is left behind.

After a committee meeting and some all butter shortbread a dressing gown cord was soon donated as an emergency tow rope whilst other riders gave the stricken machine a good shoving from behind.

The cruel mountain climb was relentless. Battery panic alarms were going off in all directions and tights were laddering at a frightening rate. At one point four competitors had to push their vehicles to a marshal’s post and take refuge.

In any other circumstances the sight of a hearse kerb crawling up to some grannies on mobility scooters would look like the most crass form of pressure salesmanship. In fact it was our support vehicle arriving with hot tea and a rather large diesel generator.

An entire cup of cocoa spilt on the racing line

An hour and a half later the scooters had enough juice to continue progress up towards the Verandah. We approached with a sense of awe and trepidation. This was the scene of Connor Cummins monumental get off at the TT in 2010 and rumours had surfaced that a rider was seen sliding off.

On our approach our worst fears were confirmed. A rider had slid off…completely to sleep, and had spilt an entire cup of cocoa across the racing line. Luckily we emerged unscathed with word that the leading riders had reached the Snaefell Mountain railway. .

The station master had kindly produced an extension lead which for some competitors was more like a lifeline. After a two hour pit stop, and as the last train headed off down to Laxey, we set off for the final push. Our supercharged machines now trundled up towards the highest point of the circuit near Brandywell. A high speed descent down the other side awaited us. The “Streetmate Elite” recorded the highest speed of the race at Windy Corner, topping out at a mind-altering 9mph.  As we rounded Kate’s Cottage our stopping point for day two, the Famous Creg Ny Baa, was now tantalisingly close growing slowly larger in the distance.

Doping scandal shock

One by one the riders rolled in and each scooter was swiftly parked up round the back. An extension lead had been kindly threaded out of the back door by the staff. The relief and adrenaline of having all made it over the mountain led to behaviour not becoming of ladies of senior years.

Basically we got twatted leading to various beer related injuries including a broken pearl necklace and a deflated boob. The night ended with a very drunken taxi ride in to Douglas for a kip in our hotel.

Going for breakfast the next morning was a bizarre experience. The only other guests in the hotel were a coachload of olds on a Saga holiday. After gleaning some useful tips on how to get a chair to make screeching sounds by dragging rather then lifting, we bid them good day. We hailed a fleet taxis back to the Creg.

Mr Sunshine was out to play again so there was no need to deploy cardigans. After we’d performed a few fly-by wheelies for our own pleasure we headed off down towards Signpost corner.

Pacemaker overload

The excitement reached pacemaker-overload pitch as we made thefinal run in to the Grandstand. Flag-waving crowds would welcome us in as heroes while the Red Arrows did a formation loop overhead.

Alas we were greeted by the sight of a builder’s arse crack as he hammered a sponsor’s hoarding to the roadside.  The place was deserted so we did what any self-respecting biddies would do. We headed down to the prom. Perched on benches with our legs inappropriately far apart.  We tucked into ice cream and fended off the seagulls.

Without warning several members of the FIM turned up for a random drugs test. In spite of some panic handbag emptying into the bins the entire field of competitors was later disqualified. Extreme levels of illegal substances were found ranging from milk supplements to the banned performance enhancing drug, marzipan.

“This all this use to be green fields” we muttered before heading off to finish our visit to the island in the place it started. The Rovers Return. Cheers!

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