This week’s weather has brought delays and cancellations for TT practices and soggy tents for some.
The 2018 TT Festival was hard to beat with its near perfect weather and a visit from Prince William who set off the TT Zero race, won by Michael Rutter.
This year, the qualifying sessions got off to a slow start and there are concerns that they could be delayed until Sunday due to the dank conditions.
Low-lying clouds and showers caused the first qualifying session for solo and sidecar newcomers on Saturday (May 25) to be postponed to the following day.
Monday’s practice was cancelled due to heavy rain.
Fortunately Tuesday’s conditions gave Superbike, Superstock, Supersport and Sidecar riders a chance to do their rounds in the evening before the rain rolled in on Wednesday, cancelling practices again.
Despite the grim weather, campers at Douglas Rugby Club TT campsite have been looking on the bright side.
’It’s a doddle,’ said Elliot Barker, from Swanwick, Nottinghamshire, when asked how his camping experience was going with the wet and windy conditions.
’It’s the fourth year I’ve been TT camping. We last visited in 2017 and the weather was absolutely horrible. This year isn’t as bad as that. This is mild.’
Camper Mark Winter from County Durham called this year’s weather ’atrocious’ while expressing some frustration at the cancelled and postponed qualifying sessions.
However, the third-time TT spectator said he accepts that nothing can be done about it and still makes sure he visits island friends and immerses himself into the atmosphere.
’I always enjoy the TT. It doesn’t matter if it’s raining,’ he said.
Richard Ebbutt, a supervisor at the campsite, told the Courier that the campsite has had ’no issues’ from the rain and wind.
’Compared to previous years when we’ve had rain it’s not been a real downpour. It hasn’t been flooding and nothing is affecting the campsite,’ he said.
’The pitches only have a bit of surface wetness and there is a little bit of puddling on the drive.
’Everybody’s in good spirits. They’re just waiting for some racing to happen. It’s all the anticipation.
’It’s a shame when they’ve come over to see the races, but it’s the way it goes.
’The racing will get done when the racing gets done.’
He added that the site has contingency plans in place in case there ever was a downpour.
’We’re a big club so we can cope to a certain extent without help and this is probably one of the most sheltered campsites in the island,’ he said.