Goggles & Gauntlets Isle of Man June 2022
Photos curtesy of Calum Fraser & Ian Parkinson
Touring Group’s annual flagship event finally made it to the magical Island. Thursday 16th June saw the majority of entrants descend on Liverpool for an overnight stay. The Crowne Plaza Hotel allowed the MOGS to be parked along the front entrance to the hotel and very impressive it was too.
Friday morning and after a leisurely breakfast the MOGS were assembled in the ferry terminal on Liverpool seafront eagerly awaiting our sailing which was delayed for an hour. Allan and Helen Lane were the first to board, this must be noted as they are usually last everywhere ! Safely onboard, the crossing was uneventful as we arrived in Douglas to light rain, aahh the usual IOM weather. The weather did not dampen anyone’s spirits as we travelled the 45 minute drive to our hotel in Ramsey. A jacknifed car/caravan caused a detour for some.
The Ramsey Park Hotel is in a super location on the seafront and ideally placed for the TT course. After settling in to our rooms the bartender was kept rather busy. An excellent dinner was enjoyed by all and briefings were given about the plans for the next few days.
Saturday morning and much excitement as after breakfast we were off in our distinct groups, Red, Blue, Orange, Green and Pink ! to the TT Grandstand for a mass photo shoot.
The group system of around 8 MOGS in each group with a leader worked well and avoided bunching on the roads. The Vintage MOGS entered had their own group led by Les and Trish Wilson who live in Peel on the Island, they joined us for the whole holiday enjoying an Island break. We all arrived at the TT paddock and were herded into our respective parking slots by Chief Parky who had added a whistle to his command tools. Seeing a line of MOGS parked in a well defined sequence makes for far better pictures and looks so professional. We were given the run of the paddock to take some impressive pictures and Ric Hardy sent up the drone for an awesome aerial video.
A loud whistle announced it was time to set off on a TT lap with a coffee stop at Tynwald Mills shopping centre, an extremely slow service at one of the onsite cafes was resolved by moving over to the bigger of the two where service was much better. One of the vintage MOGS was suffering from numerous breakdown problems, some of the others went to assist. The run continued and we arrived at the famous Creg Ny Baa pub on the TT course for lunch which was very good. By now we had Dao and Clarissa added to the group, more of which later.
Most of the group then continued on to Laxey to visit the Laxey Wheel and Mines Railway which is very interesting. A short run back to the hotel and a beer or two helped us to relax.
Dinner was another great evening to round off a perfect day.
Sunday morning saw another leisurely breakfast, it was another sunny morning ( no rain since our arrival in Douglas) and we had a busy day to look forward to. The group consisted of people from all over the UK and we also had some enthusiastic French owners join us. Raphy and Odile were with us from the start but overnight Olivier and daughter Danae had arrived after travelling up from France, it was good to meet them for the first time. Todays run was around the North of the island and we set off in our respective groups. After around half an hour Raphy suffered a fuel pump breakdown, sorted quickly as he carried a spare. The rest carried on and arrived at the Jurby Motor Museum parking along the front of the museum. Lots to see here, a very interesting area and a Transport Museum across the road too.
You remember that yesterday we had met up with Dao and Clarissa, they had seen us at the TT Grandstand and were keen to mix with us crazy MOG owners. They own a Motorcycle Racing Team on the Island, formerly Silicone Racing now called Dao Racing and have well known riders like Peter Hickman race their bikes for them. They had invited us to their home base on the island up in the mountains, our challenge was to find it ! This was accomplished fairly well and we parked at their mansion ! What a place ! The garage had a new Bentley and Porsche GT Turbo but the biggest interest was in the collection of racing and road motorcycles that they had. Not many can boast of a TT winning bike in their hallway ! A simply super collection of rare bikes indeed.
Incredibly, despite them only having met us the day before they had laid on the most awesome lunch spread of fantastic Thai Cuisine. We all tucked in and enjoyed the finest spread of food. The hospitality was the finest, THANK YOU Dao and Clarissa.
The blast back to the hotel over the mountain was fast ! ( for most) Dinner at the hotel was again most enjoyable.
Monday morning and we were awoken by several MOGS at 0630 am going out to do their TT lap, this was now becoming a regular early morning occurrence for many. We had been joined for the first three nights by Ken and Valerie from USA, friends of Allan and Helen ( really?) they were on a world tour and took a three day break to see what MOGS were all about. We THINK they enjoyed it ? we certainly enjoyed their company .Good to meet you both. Enjoy the rest of your world tour.
After breakfast we set off in our groups for a run to the South. With stops at Murrays Motorcycle Museum and the Manx Aviation Museum being very interesting we all finally ended up at the southernmost tip of IOM, The Sound Café was our lunch stop. A stunning place to visit, this has to be one of the most picturesque on the island. After lunch everyone was left to their own devices and to look around Port Erin, St Marys etc before returning back to base.
Dinner that evening was, for the majority at Vellikas Indian Restaurant and vey good it was too. Real Ale in the local pub followed ! Another great day.
Tuesday and the early morning ritual of a TT lap had increased numbers for an 0630 am start. Breakfast was as lively as ever and we assembled in the car park ready for The Whistle. By now I was most surprised it had not been nobbled.
We set off again over the mountain course turning off at Creg Ny Baa and taking the back road down to Laxey Promenade for a photo shoot. Just to show even the best laid plans can go wrong the bridge we were to cross to get to our next stop was suddenly closed for repairs meaning a possibly hazardous backtrack. However, it paid to have official help here and the bridge was reopened specially for us so we could get to The Lady Evelyn Wheel and our pre arranged photo shoot.
The Lady Evelyn is the smaller of the two Laxey wheels but is still an impressive sight, the MOGS made an impressive picture with the wheel as a backdrop. After a good break here we continued on to Milntown House and Gardens for another impressive photo shoot and visit as well as a great lunch.
Dinner at the hotel was again well presented.
Wednesday morning and after breakfast we had a special day, there are no early morning Electric Trains from Ramsey to Laxey, so we hired our own train. It took us on a lovely journey to Laxey where we caught the Snaefell Railway to the top of the mountain, a stunning view in bright sunlight.
The rest of the day was free, some went into Douglas or elsewhere all making the most of the last day.
Gala Dinner night and we were joined by Dao of Dao Racing. A great meal and we had the Awards and inevitable raffle with many prizes. A great evening as ever. Maria and I would like to thank you for your generosity in supporting the awards/raffle. This group DOES NOT seek to make money from attendees, merely cover costs. Any surplus money is channelled back into benefits for you.
Thursday morning and after checking out of the hotel many did last visits to favourite places or to do some shopping before catching the ferry back to the mainland.
A lot of us stayed over again in Liverpool before the trek home on Friday morning.
This was another very successful G&G, probably the best so far
FANTASTIC latest news Dao and Clarissa joined Touring Group AND bought a five speeder from Krazy Horse. It will be painted in DAO Racing livery.
Thank You all for your company,
Ian and Maria Parkinson, Morgan Three-Wheeler Touring Group
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