The Rowe Racing crew have been busy bodies over the past month, with preparation underway for the 2019 Manx GP in full swing.
Although there’s been no racing lately due to the winter break, we have been testing at Mount Gambier, Mallala and Tailem Bend.
PIC: Royce and Michael Villani discussing the weather at Mallala
Unfortunately, we’ve had to dodge the showers at each of the tracks but have still managed valuable development on the Ducati. We could always do with more though as frustratingly, all test days were shortened by rain.
PIC: Locky and Brian doing their thing in the garage at Tailem Bend
The only problem encountered was running out of fuel at Tailem Bend on one occasion, which provided Royce with the opportunity to get some exercise, as he had to push the bike 800 metres back to the pits.
PIC: A rare glimpse into the R&D Department, otherwise known as Brian’s potting shed, working on the Ducati.
In other exciting news, starting numbers are out for the ManxGP! As the Isle of Man is a time trial circuit, before the riders even get to start practice they’re assigned a starting position based on previous performances and predicted outcome.
Royce has been assigned number five on the Triumph for the Junior and Senior races, while the Ducati will wear number six in the Lightweight race.
PIC: Royce said, “I’m pretty happy with these numbers as I won’t have heaps of traffic to battle through like I did in my first year when starting at number 58, but I’ll also still have someone to chase, all things going well!”
Royce is now in full training mode and took time out of his busy Zumba schedule to tell us how he’s tracking, “I’m getting more comfortable on the new Duke every time we go out. Although, I’ve found it goes much faster when you’re not pushing it back to the pits!
“I’ve also been in the dance studio and gym with a tailored training program that has been helping me leaps and bounds – just little leaps though, my knees have prematurely aged a bit!
“Due to weather, there potentially could be only one more track day before the crating of the bikes. We could always do with more time to develop the bikes but we should be ready come Manx. Keen as!”
PIC: Cutting some laps on the new-and-improved Ducati (Credit: JGJ Photography)
We hopefully have one or two more chances for testing before crating the bikes in mid-July, as the Manx GP itself kicks-off in mid-August.