View from Pit Lane – Edition 44

Isle of Man Flag

Manx GP Preparation – 18 August – 19:58

We are sat in the truck, parked outside the Isle of Man Steam Packet ferry terminal in Heysham, waiting for our night crossing to the Island. A long wait, as we arrived so early we got to watch the afternoon ferry leaving her berth.

We left home in France yesterday, bang on schedule at midday, in good spirits and rather excited. The kilometres disappeared with the time, and before we knew it, we saw the inviting sign for Dieppe car Ferries 12 Kms at 8.10 pm. That’s 350 miles in 8 and a half hours, record pace in the truck!

We pulled up outside check-in wondering whether the Customs guys were going to give us a hard time over our non-existent paperwork. The truck certainly turned a few heads, for sure. After check-in we pulled up at customs and then were directed way over to the left for a search.

‘Oh god, here we go!’ we all thought…

As it turned out we needn’t have worried. After a reasonably thorough search, they wished us luck with the racing and directed us to the front of lane 14.

‘That was ok, wasn’t it?’

To celebrate we decided to take a cabin, if one was available, for some comfort. As luck would have it, one was, and we took full advantage of a good few hours sleep. We were woken by the announcement of ”we are approaching our destination harbour” four hours later.

The next little hurdle was UK Customs and as the truck is too big for the car lanes at Newhaven docks we had to go with the freight and once again we’re hoping customs are going to turn a blind eye.

They had a good look and were interested in how quick Trudie is, but commented more on our Isle of Man registration. Each to their own, I suppose!

So that was it, by 5 am we were heading out of the port, with 312 miles ahead of us and 20 hours to do it in, and we only needed 9 of them.

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