Nothing Less

When Nothing Less Than TT Will Do

Newcomers to the Manx Grand Prix must wear colored jerseys over their leathers and have more practice and lower qualifying times, but they do get the privilege of running on the same legendary course. A strong performance earns qualification in higher classes – the first step to racing at TT.


Nothing Less Through the Manx GP, racing on the Isle of Man is fairly easy (provided you can get your bike all the way there, of course!) When you get there, you can race in the “Newcomers” class, designated especially for racers with no previous experience on the Isle’s Mountain Circuit. You must acquire a British racing license (the equivalent of an AMA racing license, called an ACU license), and the only limitations are a maximum displacement of 750cc on your machine, and that you wear a red jersey designating you as a newcomer during practice sessions. Reach a qualifying time during the Newcomer’s race, and you’re immediately qualified to move up to higher race classes. Understandably, the Newcomers class is popular and oversubscribed as a result – but while you may have to wait for a spot, racing on the Isle of Man as an amateur, even if you’ve never been to the Isle before, is within reach via the Newcomers class! (Click here for more information on how to register as an entrant in the Manx GP.)

When Nothing Less Than TT Will Do

But while that may fulfill your bucket list of racing on the Isle of Man, what if you really want to race in TT specifically? If you are skilled enough to have qualifying times at the Manx GP events, you can apply for a spot at TT – but to do this, you now must have some “big league” race licenses. You’ll need an FIM International Non-Championship Race License for us Americans (this is actually easily coordinated through the AMA if you are already licensed to race through them, and the license itself costs only a couple hundred dollars) and a TT Mountain Course License which shows you are qualified to run the mountain course. The down-side? You must have these licenses issued to you for at least 12 months before entering the race.

Machine-wise, your best bet will be to race in the Lightweight class (four-stroke twin-cylinders with liquid-cooled engines up to 650cc, homologated for road use) – but in recent years, one the most accessible classes is also the newest: the Zero class for electric motorcycles. In fact, every year since the class began, at least one bike run in the race has been hand built by colleges in the U.S. and U.K.!

Truth is, most of us will never sell the house, move across the Atlantic, and put our lives on hold for a couple of years at least to race in the Isle of Man TT race. But some of us will. In the world of motorcycle racing, getting a chance to race at the Isle of Man TT is right up there with completing Paris-Dakar or finishing a round-the-world motorcycle trip, and while it’s a big commitment, mere mortals like us can achieve these feats! But if you love the Isle of Man and just want to experience a taste of it yourself, the Manx GP is your ticket to a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Click Here…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *