What a good weekend we had at
the Classic event! Dave, his wife Gloria and son Mike and
I went over to the Island on the 24th August to be ready
for all the events of the 25th which favoured us with good
weather and gave us all an emotional and memorable day.
Dave and I started the day taking part in
a radio interview alongside Steve Wynne and the great John
McGuinness, with whom we shared a few stories and laughs.
We then went along to meet up with Brook Henry
and John Keogh for the launch on the new ‘VeeTwo Hailwood’
bike, hosted by Charlie Williams.
This was the first time that Dave and I had seen it and
we were extremely pleased and impressed with how beautiful
it looked and sounded. Brook, John and the team have done
an absolutely fabulous job, so our sincere thanks and congratulations
Steve Wynne was also impressed and said that it looks more
like Mike’s original, than the original looks now.
Our thanks to Larry Auriana the owner of Mike’s original
bike, and represented by his nephew Mark, for bringing the
bike over for this special occasion.
John McGuinness on the Mike’s original bike and
Dave on the new ‘VeeTwo Hailwood’ bike.
left to right, John McGuinness, Mark Auriana, Brook
Henry, Pauline, John Keogh, John Sear and Dave.
Saturday was also the start of the Classic’s
racing programme and of course we were all supporting John
McGuinness and were so pleased to see him take yet another
win making it 24, just fabulous.
Next up was the most emotional part of the
day when we saw John walk out on to the start line wearing
Mike’s famous ‘Lookwell’ leathers for
the Mike Hailwood Tribute lap on Mike’s original bike,
celebrating the 40th anniversary of Mike’s legendary
1978 TT win. It brought a tear to more than just my eyes,
as fond memories of that wonderful win came flooding back
to all those who had witnessed it. In fact John himself
was feeling emotional at the thought of honouring Mike in
this way. I had the honour of flagging John off and he didn’t
hang around. He enjoyed the lap so much that he asked if
he could do it again later, which he did in the Classic
Parade on Monday. Well done and thank you so much John.
John and Dave on the start line
Dave, Pauline, John & Mike Jnr.
Pauline, Ron, John, Dave, Steve, Dot and the Team
on the start line
Despite the weather not being so good for
the event at Jurby on Sunday, Steve took the original bike
ably assisted by Rory Simpson and son; and the VeeTwo team
took the new bike to give the fans a closer look and to
let them hear them run.
Sunday evenings ‘Heroes Dinner’
was a great success, with Charlie Williams doing another
fine job of hosting and introducing so many of the riders
old and new. John, Steve and I did another chat session
on stage and I think everyone enjoyed the evening.
Monday 27th with racing well underway, next
up for us was the Classic Parade. The original plan had
been for Dave to ride the new ‘VeeTwo Hailwood’
bike, after John’s lap on Saturday, but we then learnt
that the organisers wanted him to take part in the Classic
Parade on Monday instead. Unfortunately the ‘VeeTwo’
bike had already been packed up and had left the Island
by then so that was not possible. Determined to have a ride,
Dave started looking around, and a very kind man called
Dave Dixon with his sons Mark and John, offered Dave his
Vincent Rapide to ride.
It was somewhat different to riding the ‘VeeTwo Hailwood’
but a ride nonetheless, which he thoroughly enjoyed. The
bike ran well and at least it was no pressure, so many thanks
to Dave, Mark and John Dixon.
Dave waiting on the start line with the Vincent and
old friend Mick Chatterton.
Our thanks also to Maxine Canon of the IOM
Post Office who, at the ‘Hailwood Centre’ kindly
presented us with framed packs of the specially minted coins
commemorating Mike’s 40th and 60th anniversaries.
Also to Paul Phillips and Sophie Lowney for
all their help; and of course to all Mike’s fans who
came to share their stories and remember him.
Our thanks to Larry Auriana the owner of Mike’s
original bike, and represented by his nephew Mark, for bringing
the bike over for this special occasion. Also, to Ron Winder
for all his help with the organisation.