IOMTT 2017 – Honour life’s opportunities to the full?

8th June 2017 by  in Daily Digest, Racing

Biker in the Clouds

IOMTT 2017 – An entry that I did not want to write. Today saw the second and third deaths during races and practices at this year’s TT.

Davey Lambert’s death having been confirmed by the ACU earlier today following his crash at Greeba Castle on Sunday, we saw two more riders die in crashes today, (Jochem van den Hoek at the 11th milestone and Alan Bonner at the 33rd milestone), tragic news for their family, friends, colleagues and fans.

These awful events cast a wide shadow, not least over those intimately involved in the immediate action – Marshals, Medics, Police, Officials, and Spectators who witness tragedy at first and horrific hand.

Some might, understandably, question why Road Racing continues given this grisly reality – I too was previously of the opinion that even coming to the Island was something that I could not contemplate, as to do so would tacitly support something that cost people’s lives.

Then in 2003 a friend of mine died at Crosby – David Jefferies died whilst practising for the Superbike race, and I was shocked to my core, not least because DJ was a superhuman rider, capable of making a bike do the impossible, and he was deservedly, “The King of The Mountain”.

Dave’s death initially confirmed my horror at the costs entailed in Road Racing, and in particular, the TT.

Then I was privileged to experience DJ’s parents’ response to the loss of their beloved son. Tony and Pauline Jefferies supported DJ’s passion for life and specifically for racing on closed roads. He had paid a horrible price for that passion, but he had lived a full and extraordinarily fulsome life, doing what he loved and doing it better than anyone else in the world.

David’s epitaph reads,

“Those who risk nothing, do nothing, achieve nothing, become nothing”.

How many of us can say that we honour life’s opportunities to the full? David did, as did Davey, Jochem, and Alan. The world is richer for their lives, and poorer for their passing.

Since first coming to the Island in 2004 I have become entranced and enthralled by the awesome courage of those whom I am privileged to observe living their dream. I honour that courage and support their decision to continue.

All the best,

Jim

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