A story from Craig and Richy fellow IOW TT 100th riders – their side of the story

I was going to print my story of the IOM Centenary TT races that was printed in Scootering and came across the lads write up and thought it was funny to show you.

Isle Of Man by Craig Arbuckle

My first visit to the isle of man was in 2006 where three of us travelled and had what can only be described as an experience which was not to dissimilar to those I had enjoyed during the 80s on Scooter rallies. All be it more civilised and certainly more sober. The general ethos was a gathering a people from far and wide who shared the same enthusiasm for all things on two wheels. Both myself and Rich had spent virtually all of our youth on scooters and nearly all our tales and memories are cantered around the good old days with the rest of the crew from Melton Mowbray.
I thought it would be right up Broady street so got him to come along this year. Mike who has no scooter background at all asked ”will he hire a bike then” No chance was my reply he will be there on a Lammy that he will build some 12 hours before we set off. During this time all Mike kept on saying was “he’s not really going to go on a Lambretta is he” and all I kept saying to him was “Don’t worry it will be fine”.

Truly enough Broady only finished his bike some 12 hours before we were going to meet. 3 out 4 bikes were Italian non of which have a reliability record.

Surely enough Broady was waiting at the docks at 7.30am. Where you been? Was the greeting Ive been here for 30 fucking minutes.

So there we all are queing for the ferry. Ducati 999 an RSV Aprilia a 675 Triumph and a GP Lambretta. Although if I do say so myself my Duke is quite trick, all the looks were for the GP. I don’t think it was the fact it was a Lambretta but the fact that it was a 90% carbon material which is always popular with bikers. On landing on the Island time to exit the ferry, countless bikes struggling to start including mine but the GP just kicked –no effort.

The best ferry memory to me though was the overwhelming smell of two stroke………..pure sex.

We had agreed I would lead to the Hotel so I set of at what I believed would be a good pace and one which would ensure we didn’t lose Broady, twisty bendy roads I thought 70 mph will be fine. I was wrong first thing he said when we pulled up at our digs was cant you go any faster I nearly ran up your arse three times.
That set the tone for the next 6 days.

My main Memories of our trip are as follows

1. Deciding to go the scenic routes for a trip to Peel with Broady leading. We must of drove for at least 15 miles along the most twisty, uneven hilly roads I have ever seen. Following broady along those roads is one of the funniest experiences I have had on two wheels. I lost count of the times when I thought for fucks sake brake you’ll never make it round that corner. The lean angle that he got from the scooter was unbelievable how he just didn’t grind to a stop at a 45 degree angle ill never know.
At one stage he hit a hump in the road and must of jumped 2 ft in the air, and 6ft in length rather than stop to get his breath he just turned round and I could see his head shaking as he just sniggered like Dick Dastardlys dog Mutley. His reaction killed me I was riding along hazardous roads with most of the time a cliff edge by my side at an average of 80mph following a giggling idiot on a Lambretta.

2. Taking a back road to Ballacrane with me in front and Mike just behind Broady my clock read 94mph Mikes read 91 so some where between these two speeds was the GP.

3. I lost count of the people who would stop to look at Broadys bike and if I had a penny for every time someone had said.” I used to have one of those” I would be a rich man. Each time Broady just walked off laughing and left us to them boring us!

4. Having got so used to riding a bike you do tend to forget how low a lambretta is. You would look in your mirror to check every one was still there and only see another two bikes and no Lambretta, Id think shit where has he gone and then remember to tilt my head raise my arm so I could see the road behind in my mirror and sure enough there he was 2 inches of my arse.

5. Without fail and regardless of the weather the Scoot started first or second kick every time, unlike my peace of Italian superbike junk!

6. Broadys overtaking I guarantee is now legendary, I can imagine that the story being relayed by hundreds of bikers is of this nutter on a Lambretta overtaking me on my 160bhp bike. We would be patiently riding along in an orderly line with masses of other bikes when broady would decide to overtake. His manoeuvres were always without fail preceded by him turning his head and doing his muttley laugh, as if it was a warning of what was about to come. Instead of indicators broady just sniggers.

Although you obviously couldn’t see the faces of the people he was overtaking there reactions were obvious. Some would jump as a screaming two stroke flew past them. Some would just not see him because they would just hear him, look in there mirrors and not see a thing. Others would just shake there heads in disbelieve. Any overtaking move led by Broady would always be followed by our three bikes it was as if we were trying to catch an inmate who had escaped from the local nut home.

The best move by Broady came when we were on a long straight coastal road between Peel and Ramsey you had at least clear vision for a mile no bends just hills. Again we just got in the line of bikes that stretched as far as you could see. Broady thought Im not hanging around here and off he went the best memory I have is watching biker after biker either jump or shake their head as he flew past into the distance this time me, Rich and Mike didn’t follow we just sat back and enjoyed and pissed ourselves as Broady disappeared into the sunset.

7. Throughout the 6 days and the hundreds of miles we covered through sun, wind and rain the only time we left Broady was on the mountain section. Myself and Mike sped of and had an average speed through the 8 mile one way mountain section of 118 mph.

Rich who got held up by traffic soon joined us at our agreed meeting place and no sooner had we switched off took our helmets off and got the fags out, up pulls Broady believe me to get through that section of the course at the speeds we go is hard work and a massive rush, to do it on a lambretta and only be a couple of minutes behind us in incredible.

I have owned numerous scooters some good some crap, I have ridden with scooterists who could ride and ride well but I have never seen a scooter either perform or be ridden with such confidence and believe. Needless to say all Mike could say was God help us if Broady got a real bike. In Mikes view of scooters prior to our trip was one of 60mph flat out and round corners at 25mph.
Me and Rich thought he would be okay but we did think he would either breakdown or we would at best have to wait for him a lot of the time…………How wrong we were. Never mind John Mcguiness average of over 130 mph setting a new record on the 100th TT race. The real talking point will be Muttley and his Lambretta.

IOM by Richie Ritch

The early morning drive to the ferry was bloody cold, there was frost on the road and freezing fog on the way up and this was June. Broady was already there waiting at the ferry with his immaculate Carbon fibred Lambretta! My first taste of Broady and his Lambretta was on the Island and the speed of the thing! When he hit the power band it launches forward at an incredible pace, up the back of Craigs Ducati. Oh and what a smell, brought back memories of old and enjoyed been behind him to get the 2 stroke fix that I so missed from all thoughts years ago!

Apart from a few exceptions Broady was to ride with us most of time, most of the time he led the way. The Peel tourist route had to be the worst road on the Island, how Broady stayed on the road and in front I don’t know! But what a laugh to see him and Craig flying through the air over bumps at silly speeds. I got to see the reactions of other slower bikers going at normal speeds as the crazy scooterist passed on any part of the road, the man is fearless!

There was some great riding and racing to be had. Over the mountain section we could finally get rid of Broady grinning up at us from his little scooter. On the mountain section we had fog and high winds that actually blew me into the grass verge, twice at nearly 150mph and bikes were passing us on the inside and outside! The whole week had me in stitches, Craigs dry humor and stories had each and everyone tommy toppering each other. Mike won with the carrot story! I’ve never eaten one since, Ill leave it your imagination! Mike lost his Gadget crown to Broady! Who also won the Von Trapp prize for the walk into the mist! Its was not a lot different from scooter rallies of old, same great blokes, stories and experiences, Broady’s scooter brought back a lot of memories and respect for Scootering. Now if they did a 150hp Lambretta Id have one instantly!

All Mike could say whilst grooming his hair was ‘god help us if Broady ever gets a bike’