The Isle of Man Festival of Motorcycling has received a major boost with a series of positive UK Motorcycle Press articles following the inaugural Classic TT event. All of the UK’s main motorcycle titles attended the event and their review articles have now appeared on shelf.
Laurence Skelly, MHK, Political Member for Tourism, Isle of Man Government Department of Economic Development commented:
‘Media coverage is one of the three areas that the Festival is evaluated against. The significant increase and positive nature of the coverage will help us to achieve the other objectives of increasing commercial revenue and visitors to the Festival.’
‘We have been delighted with the success of the Festival of Motorcycling. It is excellent to see such positive international news coverage which bodes well for an even more successful event next year.
‘I’d like to thank all of our partners in the Festival, namely the Manx Motorcycle Club, the Two Day and Classic Trial Clubs and the Vintage Motorcycle Club as well as all of the event volunteers and officials in delivering such a successful event.’
Former TT winner Mat Oxley led the way with the media coverage, writing in MCN Sport that he ‘wouldn’t be surprised if the Classic one day becomes bigger than the real thing,’ He also said in his feature that ‘the future is the past’, describing the event as a ‘resounding success’ and the Isle of Man as ‘echoing to the sounds of legendary machinery from the 1950′s to the 1990′s.
Classic Bike Magazine ran a twenty-six page feature with editor Ben Miller writing: ‘If you were over at the Classic TT you don’t need me to tell you how good it was. More than the exceptional racing, it’s the opportunity to live in a parallel universe populated almost entirely by old bikes and old bike enthusiasts that makes it magical.’
Practical Sportsbikes, featuring images from local photographer Dave Collister, said, ‘If Practical Sportsbikes was running a TT it would look a lot like this’ and described the race entry as ‘mouth-watering’.
Malcolm Wheeler praised the Isle of Man Chapter of the VMCC, describing them as ‘a great example of what a small dedicated team can achieve’ and thought that the Festival of Jurby ‘is now firmly established as a major event bringing the North of the Island to a standstill’.
The increased interest in the Isle of Man Festival of Motorcycling was reflected in improved online interaction. The newly revamped Manx Grand Prix website (www.manxgrandprix.org) saw 14% more unique visitors across the Festival period than the preceding year and an 11% rise in the total number of visits. The duration of visits also increased year-on-year.
The Manx Grand Prix Facebook page has seen a steady and continuing rise in ‘likes’ since its re-launch and now has around 4,000 members. The Classic TT page has continued to gather fans since it was launched at the beginning of the year and now has over 8,500 followers.
The Classic TT section of the Official Isle of Man TT website (www.iomtt.com/Classic-TT) has also seen a continuing upward trend helping to drive over 288,000 unique visitors to the site over the weekend of the Classic TT races – with about a third of those being new to the site.
The Classic TT Review Show, which went out on air on ITV4 on Wednesday 28th August, two days after the races and was repeated the following weekend, attracted a total of over 500,000 viewers with more to follow when the international programmes are aired.
The Manx Grand Prix is also expected to receive a major boost when BBC 2 airs the Christmas ‘Toy Stories’ special, featuring James May and Oz Clarke as they toured the Mountain Course in their ‘Meccano’ sidecar, which was filmed during this year’s event.