Manx Gran Prix Festival 10,000 Strong

Isle of Man

The newly branded Manx Grand Prix Festival saw a 4% increase in visitor numbers arriving by sea, as fans flocked to the Isle of Man for the biking fortnight. Over 10,000 people are estimated to have attended this year’s festival.

The increase follows the move by The Department of Economic Development earlier this year to bring four key events under one banner – The Manx Two Day Trial, The Classic Trial, The Vintage Motor Cycle Club meetings and rally’s and The Manx Grand Prix, Races run by the Manx Motor Cycle Club.

Fans and competitors were treated to some thrilling competition with the Manx Grand Prix, the Manx Two Day Trial and the Classic Trial all contributing hugely to the fortnight. Over 10,000 people also enjoyed the VMCC’s Festival of Jurby and were able to enjoy the close up experience of some iconic machines.

The TT Grandstand was one of the main areas of focus during the fortnight and the Classic Suzuki Race bike collection, the exhibition of Martin Bullock’s MGP winning bikes and the Getty Images Gallery photography exhibition all proved popular with fans.

The decision to allow free entry to the Grandstand seating also was successful with many people watching the Manx Grand Prix practices and a capacity audience for the MGP races.

The VMCC’s festival of Jurby was also hailed as a success with an estimated 10,000 visitors attending the event.

They were treated to a parade by 40 TT and MGP winners and podium finishers, a display of Italian Classic bikes including MV, Gilera and Benelli as well as 80 BSA Gold Stars and hundreds of classic and vintage machines.

The Department also introduced many of the PR practices that have proved so effective during the TT with a four-fold increase in media coverage reported during the Manx Grand Prix Races including significant features in Motor Cycle News as well as projected articles in Classic Bike, Classic Racer, Classic Dirt Bike and The Classic Motorcyclist.

Bill Bennett (Chairman, Manx Motor Cycle Club) says: “We are really pleased that the 2010 Manx Grand Prix Festival was a success and we look forward to working closely with the Department of Economic Development to build on this.”

Geoff Corkish (MBE, MHK, Political Member, Isle of Man Tourism) says: “This is just the first year in a long term plan to build a viable festival that attracts an increasing number of tourists and can generate its own commercial income through sponsorship and other licenses.”

“We will be looking to implement a number of positive changes and improvements moving forward, using lessons learnt this year and listening to the views of our visitors and the competitors from the various different Festival events.”

“I want to thank all of our partners, particularly the Manx Two Day Trial, the Classic Trial, the Manx Motor Cycle Club and the Vintage Motor Cycle Club for all their hard work in delivering such strong events as part of the festival.”

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One of the few moto journalists based on the East Coast, Ron Lieback joined the motorcycle industry as a freelancer in 2007 and is currently Editor at Large at Ultimate Motorcycling. He is also the author of 365 to Vision: Modern Writer's Guide (How to Produce More Quality Writing in Less Time).