BBC SPORT Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC Sport
 You are in: N Ireland  
Sport Front Page
-------------------
Football
Cricket
Rugby Union
Rugby League
Tennis
Golf
Motorsport
Boxing
Athletics
Other Sports
-------------------
Special Events
-------------------
Sports Talk
-------------------
BBC Pundits
TV & Radio
Question of Sport
-------------------
Photo Galleries
Funny Old Game
-------------------
Around The UK: 
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales

BBC Sport Academy
BBC News
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS

Friday, 24 May, 2002, 16:35 GMT 17:35 UK
McCallen hails TT as 'ultimate challenge'
Phillip McCallen has achieved 11 Isle of Man TT wins
McCallen celebrates his last Isle of Man TT win in 1997
Multiple winner Phillip McCallen assesses the unique challenge offered by the Isle of Man TT Mountain Course

The Isle of Man TT course has long been recognised as one of the ultimate challenges in world motorsport.

Each lap consists of 37.73 miles of public roads, with bikes reaching a top speed of 185mph on some parts of the circuit.

Many riders regard reaching the finish as their goal while for others, winning is all that counts.

Phillip McCallen is third in the list of all-time winners with 11 race victories to his name.

His first race on the famous circuit was in 1988 at the Manx Grand Prix, the amateur equivalent of the TT, which has been the breeding ground for many stars of the future.

Former World Superbike champion Carl Fogarty is among those who cut their racing teeth at the MGP.


The whole course is very physically demanding
Phillip McCallen

McCallen won two races on his debut and went on to compete at the TT the following year.

"Having been brought up in the tradition of Irish road racing, it was always my ambition to race on the Isle of Man.

"I regarded it as the ultimate challenge and to race there and to win was a big thrill for me.

"I was always aware of the dangers of racing on public roads but I accepted them and loved racing there at high speed.

"I did not have a favourite part of the circuit but each lap offered a variety of challenges.

"The first part of the lap is through twisty roads and built-up areas and then comes the famous Snaefell mountain.

Philip McCallen on his way to winning the Formula One event at the 1997 TT
McCallen enjoyed racing at the Isle of Man TT

"It is full of fast, sweeping bends where it is important to race as quickly and as smoothly as possible.

"The whole course is very physically demanding, especially when you have to do six laps on a Superbike.

"The smaller bikes are easier to handle but if you are going to be a winner, fitness is a priority."

The NI rider highlights commitment, determination, machine preparation and being in a good team as other important ingredients for success.

"You must have a good bike and good mechanics to help set it up and then when the flag drops, it is up to the rider.

"If you are going to win, you must go fast from the start of the race - you cannot take a lap to settle into your rhythm."


I treasure every race that I won at the TT
Phillip McCallen

Phillip is the only rider to win four races in a week at the TT and he also enjoyed success at the North West 200 and Ulster Grand Prix.

"I treasure every race that I won at the TT, although the first one was special and my four-timer in 1996 was memorable.

"Although I enjoyed racing on short circuits, public roads were always my passion. I would recommend it to any young rider.

"The bikes may be getting faster but you can still ride road circuits safely.

"The TT has a lot of history behind it and I can see it surviving for years to come."

See also:

22 May 02 | Motorbikes
18 May 02 | N Ireland
14 May 02 | N Ireland
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more N Ireland stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more N Ireland stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

Sport Front Page | Football | Cricket | Rugby Union | Rugby League |
Tennis | Golf | Motorsport | Boxing | Athletics | Other Sports |
Special Events | Sports Talk | BBC Pundits | TV & Radio | Question of Sport |
Photo Galleries | Funny Old Game | N Ireland | Scotland | Wales