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The top 10 best spots to watch the TT

A huge part of the thrill for TT spectators is the opportunity to be in such close proximity to the racers as they pit themselves against the most thrilling road race challenge in the world.

On a course made up of 37.73 miles of stunningly diverse scenery, it’s tough to pick just 10 really good spots to watch the racing but here at RL360 we set ourselves the challenge.

These are the results – obviously you may disagree. If you do, please let us know by contacting us at top10@rl360.com

TT infographic

1. TT Grandstand, Glencrutchery Road.

The start and finish line of any race is going to provide some thrilling action. Add to that the frantic activity as the riders come in for their pit stops mid race and it’s easy to see why people pay months in advance for their Grandstand tickets. Plus, there’s the quirky added extra of the Scouts manning the scoreboard with hand-painted updates.

2. Bray Hill

Even though it’s at the start of the course, make no mistake, by the time the riders hit Bray Hill they’re reaching eye-watering speeds and it only gets faster as they head downhill. The bottom of the hill is perhaps the best spot to watch from, as bikes wobble their way past before accelerating away over Agostini’s Leap.

3. Union Mills

A complex and very fast part of the course, it’s definitely heart in the mouth time here. It’s a firm favourite with many fans, who flock to The Railway Inn to take advantage of the elevated beer garden. The church across the road, however, provides stiff competition with some more sedate refreshments. Whatever you’re having, enjoy the bikes as they fly around the left-hander and off onto the straight.

4. Ballacraine

It’s a slower part of the course, given the sharp right-hander and perhaps for that reason it’s a popular place to watch. Alternatively, it could be the handy access West and East so you’re never stuck inside the course (unless you’re watching from the Ballacraine Farm side) or it could even, dare we say it, be because every so often one of the riders forgets about the turn and tries to go straight on towards St John’s.

5. Rhencullen

The fast and the furious whip through this very narrow part of the course makes for some nail-biting moments. But the real thrill comes from knowing that the track is winding through the small village of Kirk Michael, with its Manx cottages lining both sides of the street. There are plenty of places to watch here, including in front of the Mitre pub.

6. Ballaugh Bridge

Here, you’ll see bikes fly through the air as the riders wrangle them over the famous Ballaugh Bridge. Fans flock to this spot to try and capture a shot of their favourite rider airborne over the hump-backed bridge. There are a fair few wobbles here and more ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ than at a firework display.

7. Sulby Straight

It’s a case of blink and you’ll miss them here, but it’s worth it. If you can stand it, you can see riders reaching speeds on a motorbike you could only dream of. And when it comes to the leaders, with the right track conditions, expect the speed trap at Sulby to record speeds in excess of 200mph. You can witness the spectacle from the surrounding fields, just check you have permission first.

8. Churchtown

This is a beautiful section of the course, close to hills and a plantation, but all eyes will be on the bikes as they negotiate the fast, narrow, bumpy roads in this section of the course. It’s a chance to watch the riders’ skill as they wrestle to keep their front wheel on the ground. Plus, there’s a grandstand here and a few amenities.

9. Ramsey Hairpin

It’s another very slow part of the course by virtue of the hairpin bend, which can sometimes serve as a kind of chicane effect when two bikes are close on the road. There aren’t a lot of areas to watch near this radio commentary point but if you can save yourself a space it’s worth it as you’re watching them accelerate away onto the first part of the mountain climb.

10. Creg Ny Baa

While the pub has its own corporate grandstand and there’s an official Fanzone on the right these days, there are still plenty of free areas to watch around Creg Ny Baa. The stretch down from Kate’s Cottage to the main corner is one of the fastest parts of the course and you can watch them speed away towards Hillberry. Last lap battles on the road between leaders are pretty common here.