Locked and Loaded

The team spent most of yesterday at a dyno, being helped by ‘Slick’, who works alongside TT Sidecar legend Dave Molyneux. Slick was Carl Fogarty’s mechanic back in the day, so it’s good to know we’re working alongside some extremely experienced individuals. The dyno-tuning went well and the team were able to put some final touches on the bikes which weren’t made in time before crating up.

Aug2017 010

PIC: Royce Rowe with TT sidecar legend Dave Molyneux at our dyno-tuning session


Their workshop is just past Ramsey, a well-known town on the Island. It’s situated on an old World War Two airfield, which is just one of the many World War heritage sites across the IOM. Both Dave and Slick were very friendly and helpful, and the team truly appreciate their assistance. It can be difficult finding your way in a foreign land, but the locals have been nothing but fantastic each year.


The team didn’t have much time for anything else, apart from driving all the way to the other end of the Island to see our friend Andy at Ballasalla to get oil. Once again, Andy is just another example of a local who has been super helpful over the years and is part of the reason our team runs like a well-oiled machine… pardon the pun.


PIC: Works Race-Department manager supervises preparation of the motorcycles on the Isle of Man


Today is sign on day, so the team will busily be attending rider’s briefings and having the bikes/riding gear checked over. Being such a serious race, machines are scrutineered before every session.


PIC: Our top rider enjoying some down time at Ballacain Cottages


Practice starts tomorrow (Saturday) but the weather forecast isn’t good, so we may not be able to start. As we have found over the past two years, the inclement weather is impossible to judge and we just have to roll with the punches.


Practice will continue in the evenings for the following week, then a final practice session is held on the Monday of race week. The Junior, which Royce will contest onboard the Triumph, is on Wednesday, August 30, at 10.15am IOM time.


The Super Twins race has been revamped for this year and will now be incorporated in the Lightweight race. This really opens the floodgates to potential winners, so the first few sessions will be very intriguing. The Lightweight will also take place on Wednesday, but after the Junior at 1.15pm IOM time.


The crescendo of the Manx GP, the famous Senior race, will be run on Friday, September 1, at 10.15am IOM time. The Isle of Man runs nine hours behind Eastern Standard Time (EST). So, the Senior will be run at a prime time of 7.15pm EST.


PIC: Royce flying through last year’s Senior race


The local radio station will be broadcasting the races, so tune in to http://www.manxradio.com/on-air/manx-radio-tt/ if you’d like to listen live. For live timing, a website will be activated soon, so keep an eye out on here for more details as this will show practice and race times.


Before the festival begins, you have a chance to read up on the competition. Road Racing News, the UK’s premier road racing website, has compiled a preview on the three races the team will be featuring in (click the links below). Royce made the cover photo for the Junior/Senior write-up, providing a nice buzz in the Rowe Racing Team garage.






Third time’s a charm

The Rowe Racing Team has landed in the Isle of Man after enduring the now annual long-haul flight. After great results in the 2016 Manx GP, Royce and co are attempting to really make their mark on the International Road Racing scene.

The Official Manx GP website has already underlined Royce as a serious competitor for both the Junior and Senior races this year in the festival pre-amble, not to mention the Supertwins class the team thrive in back home.


PIC: The three bikes ready to be tucked in


Preparations began months ago with the team working together in order to get the bikes and gear packed into steal crates on time. Although being a very stressful exercise, all five managed to land safely in the Isle of Man.


PIC: Everything but the kitchen sink!


With the race bikes somewhere over the Indian Ocean, there wasn’t much for the team to do in the gap between licking the stamps and flying out themselves. Not ones to rest on their laurels though, a final run before the Isle of Man was undertaken last weekend at a cold, windy and deserted Mallala on the BJR Ducati 1000.


PIC: The only pit stop the team take their time getting through



After an uneventful flight, apart from the usual visit to the Guinness Bar in Dublin Airport, the team landed and began the less stressful task of unpacking. After last year’s incident of struggling to replace parts after a crash, the team packed everything but the kitchen sink.


PIC: With torrential rain forecast, Royce had an open track for the day – and miraculously no rain!


Some fared better than others in the game that is international travel, with Team Principal Les left waiting at the baggage collection for a suitcase that never showed. Three days in the same clothes wasn’t ideal, so luckily a local op-shop in Onchan provided a solution. The lost suitcase finally arrived this afternoon and the substitute t-shirt was promptly thrown into the fire. The team laptop was also inside the case. On return, Royce was relieved to get back into watching on-board footage of the track, analysing RPM mapping and nightly cat videos to help him fall asleep.

MGP2017 043(1)

PIC: Our pre-race fire ceremony to appease the road Gods – Les’ t-shirt being the sacrifice


The team is now settled into Ballacain – the cottages we have used each year in the county of Onchan. Now, the team can get to work on preparing the bikes for our first outing this Saturday. All the bikes will be taken to a local dyno tomorrow in an attempt to tune them in a bit better as time ran out to do so at home. The dyno is used by TT legend Dave Molyneux, so we have no doubts the results will be top class.

MGP2017 033

PIC: It’s like Christmas morning on the Isle


While things are quiet, Royce has taken the opportunity to get out on the public roads aboard his ex-supersport Suzuki. Being such a tough track to memorise, any chance riders get to follow the course is valuable.

MGP2017 039 PIC: The Rowe Racing entourage for 2017


Keep an eye out in the coming days for further updates on preparation developments and a ‘How-To’ guide on the best ways to keep track of the racing.