12-time trials world champion Dougie Lampkin, MBE, has become the first person to successfully complete the iconic 60.7km Isle Of Man TT course in the UK on just one wheel.
Hurry Up And Wait
Forced to postpone by 24 hours when 85kph gale-force winds swept the island, Lampkin left the famous Grandstand start line at 5.00pm. The take-off was just a little too fast, and Lampkin had a struggle on his hands to settle down into the first few kilometres. The wind proved an ongoing concern through the most challenging milestones of the course. As expected, the infamous mountain section made for tense viewing as Lampkin fought gusts of 60kph.
Figure Of Speech
Speaking after crossing the finishing line, Lampkin commented on just how tough the attempt was.
“Up to 10 times I came close to dropping it and I thought I’d lost it twice. When you’ve lost your balance and your right leg comes off, you’re in massive trouble. I couldn’t rely on the rear brake at that speed.”
Having met Mr Lampkin, the author is pretty sure he probably said, “Oop to 10 tarms Ah coom close to dropping bike. Thort Ah’d dropped bugger twice,” and so forth. He has a bit of a Pom accent. We think it’s a northern dialect.
Cheered on by crowds at points along the course, Lampkin punched the air in delight as he crossed the line, one hour and 35 minutes after setting off.
Summing up the incredible effort after months of gruelling training and modifications to his factory Vertigo trials bike, he said: “I feel absolute massive relief. The build up to it, seven months of planning, everything that’s gone on, like the nightmare with the weather yesterday and still strong winds today on top of the mountain, I was just hanging on, really.
It wasn’t over until a couple of metres from the end, but that last couple of metres was just amazing.”