Steel Balls – Live or Die on a SuperBike

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Ride a Helmet Camera in the Motorcycle Race that Holds the World Record for KIA Riders – 237                 …by Jim W. Dean, VT Editor

 

Guy Martin – Racer with Nine Lives – Survived This Crash – Hitting the Wall with a Full Tank

It is not often we can experience what a moment before death is like, nor would we want to.

But the evolution of smaller and higher quality video cameras has launched a fast growing ‘point of view’ media genre where you basically get to see what the participant does.

Racing is the ultimate experience for PoV (point of view) video, and as I just learned, super bike motorcycle racing is in a class by itself.

Take a motion sickness pill if needed, sit back and get ready for an experience I have never had before.

At first your senses will tell you an editor has mistakenly hit the fast forward button until you realize…oh no, they really are going this fast.

The audio from the screaming engine and the gear changes add a lot.

The scene of the action is the Isle of Mann’s infamous TT motorcycle race, where between 1907 and 2009…237 riders have died pitting their human skills against those of Mother Nature on the Snaefell Mountain Course.

As often happens, one of my many editor friends spotted this footage and passed it on to curious me, always looking for new and unusual material for our readers.

The term ‘blown away’ seems appropriate to describe my reaction.

I will lead with the main HD edited piece which includes not only PoV shots but course cameras and fabulous aerial ones, and then follow up with some others that I sifted out from YouTube.

Video quality varies so be sure to check your selection button for the best.

You could never get me on one of these bikes, say as a passenger…to go out for joy ride. If you were holding a gun on me I would just go ahead and say shoot me, and then you can strap my dead body onto the bike if you want.

The average 130 mph speed I first saw in some stats, I did not grasp that that included top speeds in the 180 to 200 range. The helmet cam shots through the easy curves at high speed literally seem to give virtually no time to react.

The Course Winds Through Villages and Countryside

The race requires an intimate memorization of the course where your brain has to be a 100 to 200 yards of what you can view. And as you will see, mistakes at these speeds…well, they aren’t pretty, but it is over quickly, most of the time.

I included a full run narrated piece by racing announcers so you have that professional delivery.

And then I have a top rider, Guy Martin giving a full course narration, which in his Cockney accent and talking almost as fast as the bike is going to stay up with the action, is a bit hard to understand with one pass.

I put Martin in as he has earned some air time. And there follows an interview with him about surviving crashes, including flaming ones.

It’s an intimate peak into the casual attitude they have which I thought was a perfect example of how different these race riders were from the rest of us.

They have what the race circuit folks call ‘Steel Balls’. I am sure the UFO people love these guys the most and have taken all the best videos home to show their friends are how cool earthlings are for the promise they show pushing the boundaries back. Enjoy.

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Insane Motor Race – Isle of Man TT

 

Note: Be sure you have selected the highest quality playback. For the 480p it is worth going to Youtube to watch in the medium size screen. For 306p I would just stay here. These took a bit of hunting to sift through for the better ones, but I had never seen any before.

An early morning practice run takes you all round the course. Remember to peak at the speedometer during the straightaways. Neil the Fish hits 187mph on mountain mile section during practice week. Riding a ZX10R followed by Crofty on a GSXR1000. The camera had a fault that was later sorted out so had to edit out one small section. 480p here.

[youtube 5FmC-beG12Q] -187 Neal

 

Bad Crash here. Driver lays down but still goes into an unpadded wall had high speed.

[youtube v25j_JdUx1c] – Crashes

 

On-board with the TT’s quickest ever recorded lap in the Senior TT 2007 race in the TT’s 100th Anniversary Year with British rider, GUY MARTIN (who provides the lap commentary), wired up with Greenlight Television’s mini-bullet-cams. Learn how to ride the Island – FAST! 480p here…a unique course run with the champion racer describing the tricks of the trade.

[youtube QVXc29ZgutI] -Guy Martin narrating a circuit…if you can understand it all

Guy Martin hits the wall…a heavily padded one. Shaken up a bit but walks away. 480p here.

[youtube gTbcV8PWjoM] – Guy Martin hits the wall

 

We will wrap it up with an interview with Guy Martin on his fiery crash that is the featured image. From his description he seems to have bailed out of the bike before it hit the wall and blew up…a good move on his part. He did have to slide through the flames but the suits they wear protect from that. 360p

Catch the doll he is holding in his hands. If you did not know this was really him, would you ever believe in a million years that this was a death defying super bike racer? I wouldn’t. It’s a great lesson in how you cannot judge a book by it’s cover…and to not pre-judge people from just their appearance. Amen. Preaching over 🙂

[youtube EhA_U6LStQA]

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And yes, he lived through this !

Good looks, pampering for men.(Merchandising; interest in male grooming industry trend)

Mass Market Retailers March 22, 2004 NEW YORK — The increasing feeling among men that good looks and good health go together is driving sales of electric razors, say experts on the category.

Men’s desire for a close shave that also treats their skin well is behind the phenomenon, say the experts, explaining that the macho appeal of a wet shave is waning as men increasingly appreciate the comfort of an electric shave.

“The razor wars are in full swing,” comments Steven George, director of marketing for Norelco Consumer Products Co., which has just launched the Cool Skin Shaving System. The system promises a shave that is as close as a blade’s but with less irritation.

“Cool Skin,” he adds, “is the latest chapter in the razor wars.” The introduction meshes with men’s heightened concern with how they look and feel, says George. Men have been freed to relate their overall well-being to their appearance in ways they never could before, he says. this web site facial hair styles

Such shows as “Queer Eye for The Straight Guy,” have exposed men’s vulnerability to not keeping up with fashions, he says.

Other evidence of the trend is the emergence of upscale barbershops and spa/boutiques for men in New York and Miami.

“That used to be the territory of women and now mainstream society is giving men permission to go there,” says George. go to web site facial hair styles

In that same vein men are increasingly purchasing skin care products for their distinctive needs. Skin care lines under the Nivea (Beiersdorf Inc.) and Neutrogena brand umbrellas are among those targeting men.

“Cool Skin plays very much into that,” George comments. “It’s about a close and comfortable shave, but it delivers an experience as well–a revitalization and rejuvenation of the skin.” The appeal of electric razors is borne out by sales data from ACNielsen. Volume of electric razors in food, drug and discount outlets excluding Wal-Mart Stores Inc. jumped 7.8% to $407 million in the year ended February 21, according to Nielsen. That is a dramatic turnaround from the prior year, when sales fell 2.3%.

Helping fuel the growth, says George, is the adventurousness of young athletes and hip-hop artists with facial hair styles.

“It’s very flexible,” he says of their experimentation. “You can have one look one day and then shave it off.” The tendency to rapidly change styles is reflected in sales of trimmers, which have grown tremendously over the past few years, George notes.

In recognition of that trend, Norelco is rolling out the AccuVac Beard & Moustache Trimmer, combining personalized trimming settings with the convenience of no cleanup.

15 COMMENTS

  1. We don’t play the video on VT. The Youtube embed plays it from Youtube so I don’t see any reason for us to have anything on. We do have some motion ads on the website so it might have to do with them being able to play.

    The comments defaut time length is 39 days. Writers and toggle it on or off during that period. Any admin questions should be directed to staff people from the staff page were all the addresses are, so reader time is not wasted in the comment section.

  2. Dear folks, Congrats to you all. We have over 2200 reads on this…one of the tops for my entertainment, living, arts type articles. I told Gordon when I came on VT that we needed to broaden the content out more.

    But I just did the Google count on the title and thought I would share some of the behind the scenes stuff we try to do.

    We have two kinds of readers here….direct website readers, and all those that don’t come here because they see the article on other websites that copy our stuff. The only gauge we have on that readership is the Google count on how many places it has found the article on the Net. This might surprise you:

    04-07-13 About 2,190 results
    04-08-13 About 8,320 results

    So over 8300 places on the net have borrowed this piece. Some link back here, but most don’t. But we do get all of that international exposure.

    I told Gordon that it would take a year to get these other sections cranked up…for people to be aware of and pass the word, but the pump priming had to be done so we could have a break as I had said, from the all to often depressing stuff that we cover. But it’s working. Thanks

  3. Argh.

    I had the movie “Isle of Man TT” and deleted it because I thought it is not that interesting.

    Have to find it again.

  4. Great footage Jim…..wonder if these guys can get any life cover at all ! Martin doesn’t have a Cockney accent by the way; he’s a Northern lad from Lincolnshire.

    • I had a better one, a compilation of crashes includind some helicopter shots but Youtube had taken it down due to copyright claim.

      We try to go back to these older stories as new readers have not seen them and we have a chance to replace the dead videos. And we need to get away from all the blood and guts, gloom and doom material now and then as it can get depressing. We figure the readers need a break, too.

      And oh…Gordon, the VT wildman, has had a TT racer for a long time. But not me. As I said in the piece I would take a bullet before I would get on one of those running through those tiny roads and curves and stone walls and trees, etc.

  5. How very curious. I guess the issues of the vets has become boring to writers on this site. All the military suicides? The dumb-down education, the Ritalin>methylphenedate>methamphetetamine>cocaine connection? The massive laundering of drug money in big banks with 90% heroin from Afghanistan and our troops there to guard the crops? The masses of innocents that have died and are no doubt dying as I write this? Boring? Go back to your bikes. You are elitists. See how far the bikes will take you when the pendulum swings. Word is we are in the last phase.

    • Dear cry baby, VT has had a broad topic base for a long time here. This may come as a surprise to you but veterans are real people, and they have other interests besides being a veteran. There is no veteran horror story that we are not intimately familiar with.

      We write about hard core issues all the time Mr. Whiner, who has not been reading the site or you would know this. We do material that no one else will touch, but that is probably over your head. So your cheap shot at us is not appreciated, and even if you are a veteran you are not welcome here because as a newbie you made false accusations here.

      We don’t need some keyboard narcissist playing God to us. I know you have not been to the staff page dummy, but here it is. Exercise you reading skills, and maybe your mind, too.

      http://www.veteranstoday.com/staff-writers/

      Go down to the In Memorium page to see if you recognize anybody.

  6. Great videos. Thanks. 40 years ago I was in the Isle of Man – staying at Port Erin above a diving shop. I said to My Mum and Dad – I want to go diving too – but I guess they couldn’t afford the hire of the wet suit let alone the air – though eventually I did go diving too – easy – just maintain your self control.

    I never actually “officially” raced bikes, but as I had been brought up on them, I didn’t have a great deal of choice but to take them to the limit at the time 0-60 in 3 seconds – but it wouldn’t go round bends, so I took up gliding instead – and wore a parachute.

    When you are fighting with it…you are going just a little too fast round the bend – and you snatched at the brake too hard – time literally slows down – maybe in the next second you will die – and you hang on – but eventually you have got to let the bike go….You then stand up – completely unhurt – and your brand new GS750 is smashed to bits – and you are so angry with yourself and determined to get it back on the road as soon as you can…It never even occurs to yourself – that you could have now been dead.

    When you are young you have no fear. You just want to kill. Thankfully there was no war to fight when I was a kid, but I do understand.

    Thank You for taking me back to Lancashire and The Isle of Man.

    Tony

  7. I have scrambled dirt bikes in the bush but this is a whole other bag, the lack of forward visibility around the endless bends is freaky stuff at those speeds. No thanks.

  8. Good Viewing and Story:

    Exceptionally Good. it reminds us we are still alive and can take these dangerous journeys and maybe come out the other side (since we test ourselves, no one is getting hurt or harmed but us, grieving family and friends, and maybe a few bystanders) for other good deeds.

    The courage to challenge the course at maximum speed, and the escape or conquering of fear is most important.

    • Emma,

      I had absolutely no fear of bikes,but I was really shy. I simply couldn’t speak to the girls I fell in love with. I would be standing there..and nothing but trembling would come out of my mouth. I couldn’t possibly ask her out for a date, cos I knew she would laugh at me – and say – Look – everyone – he – has aked ME out for a date – just look at the little quivering piece of shit…

      So I bought a Sports Car instead – and that didn’t work either…it had a slick shift – the gear knob got in the way…..

      So I almost gave up….

      Then I took up gliding…..and wore my Yorkshire Gliding T-Shirt…

      They even thought I was posh till I opened my mouth…and raw working class Lancashire came out

      I’ve been sailing too – anything to meet a posh girl who has something to say.

      We’ve been together for 32 years by the way.

      Tony

  9. “You could never get me on one of these bikes, say as a passenger…to go out for joy ride. If you were holding a gun on me I would just go ahead and say shoot me, and then you can strap my dead body onto the bike if you want.”

    I have ridden pillion with AMA and FIM champion Jason Pridmore (you can too if you attend Star Motorcycle School) at speeds up to 140-mph, and it is not really scary other than the grip required to hold on is much more stressful on the arms than riding the bike (where you can use your legs much more to resist forces).

    I ride race track days on my own super-sport bike (though obviously not nearly as well as pro racers), and if I had the time and money I would consider doing “Mad Sunday”, where they let non-racers ride the TT Mountain course.

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