Isle of Wight Road Races 2021: A new motorcycle race in the West: Here’s the detail we’ve found out

There’s talk of a new motorcycle race in the West of Wight – Not Diamond Races. News OnTheWight’s got details from a briefing document (shared with us on the QT) and have been doing some digging. Here’s what we’ve found

Motorcyclist racing

When it was announced the Isle of Wight TT – Diamond Races, planned for October 2021 was postponed due to Covid-19, just a day or so later, a new motorcycle race was announced, the Isle of Wight Road Races (IWRR).

The IWRR announcement came with very little detail, just that it would be taking place on a different route to the Chale-Brighstone-Military Rd one, but was planned for around the same time of year.

There were no details of who was organising the event and whether any of the original team from the Diamond Races were involved.

Digging for more information
News OnTheWight has been doing some digging and discovered several pieces of information relating to IWRR that readers may find of interest.

The information comes from a briefing document leaked to News OnTheWight and parish council minutes.

Different type of race
One of the main differences between IWRR and Diamond Races is that the latter had planned their races as time trials.

This requires riders setting off individually and their time to complete the course will rank them in the results.

Those who have been briefed say the IWRR are hoping for a road race – although this is subject to circuit inspection – with 10-15 competitors setting off at the same time.

Who is involved?
If approved, the date IWRR are discussing with parish councils is 20th-24th October 2021.

Although the vision for the IWRR is of James Kaye (the man behind the Diamond Races), the “primary producers” have been named as Josie and Rob da Bank, the team behind Bestival. The popular three-day music event was held on the Isle of Wight from 2004-2016, moving to Dorset from 2017 onwards.

IW Road Races logo

Josie and Rob will be working with an events company called APL Event, who have previously worked with couple at Bestival.

Race organiser and clerk of the course
The race will be organised by ACU Events Ltd who are the commercial arm of the Auto Cycle Union – the governing body for motorcycle sport in Great Britain.

Gary Thompson MBE BEM from ACU is expected to be clerk of the course, as he was named for Diamond Races. You can listen to our podcast with Gary from the launch of Diamond Races.

The course
When asked by Brighstone Parish Council where the start, finish and race village would be, organisers said it is “subject to the circuit inspection”.

However, a briefing document to town and parish councils reveals the race village is likely to be Tapnell Farm (it’s named in the logo artwork), with the route described as being based around Freshwater Bay and Brook.

Based on that, News OnTheWight has put together what that route would look like and estimate it to be 8.27 miles:

Isle of Wight Road Races - Expected route April 2021

Dates of the event?
The event is planned for 20th-24th October, the second half of October half-term holiday.

Organisers say there will be three days of practice, with the final day including qualifying, plus one day of racing (Saturday 23rd).

The roads are expected to closed between 10.30am and 5.00pm each day and discussions are being held with Southern Vectis about diversions for the routes 12 and 7 buses.

Stewart: ACU only likely to licence one event
Minutes from the Shorwell Parish Council meeting held in March revealed that the council leader, Dave Stewart believed the ACU were only likely to licence one event on the Island.

The minutes read:

The Diamond Races event will not be taking place in 2021.

An alternative event organised by IW Road Races Group is still hoping for an October 2021 date & the ACU Licensing body are due on the Island shortly to consider the proposed course & arrangements. This proposed event would be based around Tapnell Farm & the course would be around Brook, Freshwater & Compton. This would be racing, rather than time trials.

Councillor Stewart confirmed that the IWC would only be prepared to allow an event that met the highest safety arrangements & that the ACU were only likely to licence one event on the Island.

Approval from Secretary of State
The IWRR were discussed at the March meeting of Chale Parish Council where it was claimed the races would require consent from the Secretary of State.

Minutes read:

“The Diamond Race event is still ongoing but have to secure funding so the proposed April 2022 date is questionable. The other, shorter event over at West Wight now has local parties involved, namely Tapnell Farm and Rob Da Bank. This is looking to be a more family orientated event. The route has far less residential properties on it. The event is still on target to run October 2021. The national body is coming to the island at the end of the month to look at the route etc. It still requires consent from the safety Advisory Group and Secretary of State. There are mixed views from local residents.”

“It still requires consent from the Safety Advisory Group and Secretary of State.”

Awaiting approval
A meeting with the Safety Advisory Group (what’s this?) was due to take place this week. News OnTheWight have asked the Isle of Wight council whether this is still due to take place.

We’ll update once we hear back.

At the beginning of last month, organisers wrote to all parish councils to explain that they planned to start consulting with residents and business as well as town and parish councils later that month.

Freshwater, Yarmouth and Shorwell Parish Councils will all be discussing the event at tonight’s (Tuesday) meetings.

Image: For illustrative purposes only – motorcycle racing by vikram sundaramoorthy under CC BY 2.0

Tuesday, 6th April, 2021 6:51pm



Filed under: Brook, Compton, Freshwater, Isle of Wight News, motorcycling, Sports, Top story, West Wight

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13 Comments on "Isle of Wight Road Races 2021: A new motorcycle race in the West: Here’s the detail we’ve found out"

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I ride a motorcycle. I enjoy motorsport of all kinds. However, both of these bike racing ideas ideas are potty in the extreme. Leaving aside the disruption to people’s lives, which will certainly be more than the three days of the events, there is the high probability of life changing injuries and multiple deaths to competitors and the inevitable bunch of wannabes hurtling round a thoroughly inappropriate… Read more »
For someone who “enjoys motorsport of all kinds” you obviously haven’t watched road racing which takes place all over the UK and the IOM. Watching a track race is useless as this is totally different. Why do they think it’s necessary? Maybe because it would be a huge boost to our much beleaguered holiday industry outside the normal holiday season and put us on the world stage.
Thanks wizz. Apart from The IoM TT and the North West 200 in Northern Ireland where else in the UK are organised m/c Road races run? Naturally a track race is different from a road race. It’s less disruptive and safer. My comment about necessity refers to the extensive safety measures incorporated into track design not to the questionable commercial benefits of holding the event on the… Read more »
The only closed road road race in England is held at Oliver’s Mount, on the service roads around some local authority playing fields. There are no immediate neighbours and no rights of way across the track. There’s no issues with bookings for this coming October school half term and it will poison the atmosphere for existing tourists who come here for the great outdoors and peaceful environment.… Read more »
So having failed to get funding for Diamond Races, another smaller event with some of the same people is proposed. Whilst proper details are a bit thin on the ground, the suggested dates at a half-term holiday necessitating arterial road closures would seem to be a tad counter productive. Anyone thinking “it’s only for five days” needs to consider the days before and after as the roads… Read more »

If it is safe to speed along those roads can we look forward to the existing speed limits being permanently lifted for ordinary day to day use?

Why the obsession over probably the most dangerous, most likely to kill people, loudest type of Motorsport in the world? Surely a one day classic time trial for cars would be a much better starter for 10 for closed road motor sport on the island? Quieter, less distance, more ability for local people to compete. What’s not to like vs an event that’s far more likely to… Read more »
I have absolutely no interest in motorsport, ThomasC. None at all. I think the only sport that would interest me less is Association Football. But I have a choice not to go and watch. Much as you do. Participants in sports, whether motorcycling, football, equestrianism or competitive ironing are all aware of and accept the risks. That’s life. Life without risks would be very dull indeed. There… Read more »
Benny C
I’m guessing buzkashi (how I wish we were actually getting that) doesn’t really attract the equivalent of the fake track bike brigade of poseurs pretending they have racing licences and realising at leisure why they haven’t while they languish in St Mary’s and their trashed machine is extracted from someone’s property. For goodness sake, if folks are having a mid life crisis or some sort of iron… Read more »
The problem is, in the West Wight, you won’t have an option to not experience the noisy and dangerous motorbike racing, as it’ll be audible across the whole West Wight for five consecutive days. That’s too much. That’s way too much when families want to come and enjoy the Island, which is sold as peaceful by Visit IOW, during the school half term holidays. Oh and I… Read more »
Benny C

I bet this will evaporate. Too close to an AONB, local objections, election risks, recession, cost – the list goes on. It has to be said though that Rob Da Banks route is far superior to the Dave Stewart vote loser circuit.


I hope this goes ahead. I have no interest in motorcycles, and I do live in the West Wight, but any event like this that would help to kick start (pun very much intended) our tourism economy later this year is very welcome in my book.

So who will undertake the work making the race circuit safe, erect stands, resurface the proposed route? Island Roads would surely want a say, and probably IWCC have to pay up. But would they pass the cost onto the organiser? Answer on a Postcard Please! Stands and other facilities for the event would need to be erected and removed; resulting surely in road closures and other disruption.… Read more »