Poor weather has once again halted practice on the Isle of Man.
Today we were all set to go with Royce contesting the Lightweight class (Ducati) first and then the Junior/Senior (Triumph) after.
The opening session was to start at 6.20pm. We were warmed up, fuelled up and helmet on when at 6.17pm it started to rain, forcing the session to be delayed for 10 minutes, then again and again until it really poured down and the decision was made to cancel practice all together.
PIC: Before today’s session was due to start, Royce was interviewed by MGP TV who are planning to live stream most of the practices and all races this year. You can watch their Tuesday night pre-practice footage here.
The weather doesn’t look like it’ll get any better tomorrow, so thankfully Clerk of Course, Gary Thompson has made the call to utilise the additional practice session on Thursday afternoon.
“The schedule will now see roads close around the TT Course at 12.30pm and reopen between 4.30pm and 6pm and then close again at 6pm for the evening qualifying session. The full schedule for Thursday’s qualifying programme will be released on Wednesday evening.”
PIC: On Royce’s session yesterday he clipped a branch of a bush just before the Gooseneck, leaving quite a bruise. We went up there this morning and he did a bit of pruning.
We’ve learnt from past years that patience is one of the most important qualities needed so we’ll just continue to wait.
We have to be down at Technical Inspection before 3.30pm every day but sessions don’t start until 6.20 (when they do start) so we’ve had to equip one of the vans with a bed for Royce to get his required amount of sleep.
PIC: Royce in the makeshift snooze-mobile.
After a much anticipated return to road racing, Royce had this to say, “Getting out on the bike Monday was great. The track was just how I remembered with a few spots being resurfaced and felt quite nice.
“I’m just easing into it with early braking and rolling through corners. I’ve now got my base lap and will work on getting back to my previous lap times.
“I snoozed in the van ‘til go time then hung around parc ferme waiting for the clerk of course to let us know they were ready. The sudden downpour that sent people scattering was the give away that tonight wasn’t gonna go ahead.
“Will rest up and prepare for the next day.”
PIC: Royce making some smooth lines in Monday’s first practice (Credit: Nick Wheeler)
Fingers crossed the heavens somehow hold off for Wednesday night’s practice, but if not we now at least know there’s an extra couple of sessions waiting for us on Thursday. Onward and upward!