Author: Bike Social Sports Reporter Posted: 20 Aug 2014
Winner of the 2013 Bennetts 500cc Classic TT, Olie Linsdell says he’s looking forward to a more ‘relaxed’ year this time out as he switches from Paton to Royal Enfield machinery.
Riding the Giovanni Cabbassi/Flitwick Motorcycles Paton 500, Linsdell stormed to a dominant win around the 37.73 mile mountain course in 2013, finishing over two minutes ahead of his closest rival.
The Bedfordshire rider says he was pleased to take the win for classic racers in a field packed with modern TT heroes such as John McGuinness.
“I’m a rider that mixes the modern riding with the Classic stuff and always have done throughout my career so it felt nice for a real classic racer to take the Classic TT win rather than one of the superfast professional motorcycle racers who had been given a bike for the Classic TT. It was nice to do that for real classic racers everywhere.
“I’ve won two races on the Isle of Man course before, two Manx Grand Prix – the newcomers and Ultra-Lightweight back in 2007 – but this one was a real race against people like John McGuinness and William Dunlop, anyone who was anyone at the TT was there! To go and win a race by two minutes was cool but it would have been nice to have had someone closer to me so we could have made a proper race of it. Until I got to Ramsey on the first lap I was pushing and then I saw a board that said I had a 30 odd second lead so I backed off from there on so to me it didn’t feel like a true race.”
For 2014, Linsdell switches Royal Enfield machinery, a decision he says he made for several reasons. Linsdell suffered a broken foot in a crash at Scarborough in the build up to the Classic and has only recently had a metal cage removed from the injured foot. He’s steadily improved across the two practice sessions so far, with a fastest lap of 101.100mph on Tuesday.
"I’m riding the Enfield this year because A) it’s a bike I’ve helped develop and B) it’s a lovely bike to ride around the Island, the chassis is brilliant and I just fancied having a year that was relaxed. The result doesn’t really matter to me, I’d like to get a 110mph lap on a single cylinder machine but unfortunately my injury has probably put pay to that. Until Tuesday I still had a cage around my foot and it’s probably still half its full strength but we’ll see what happens, as the week goes on it might get progressively better and with my race head on I might surprise!
“They told me the cage would be on between four and six weeks so I did everything I could to get it off at the earliest opportunity. I had a lot of hyperbaric treatment in England and a lot of laser treatment too but unfortunately I couldn’t have it off at four weeks because the consultant was on holiday, so it was a bit of a kick in the teeth as I’d spent all that money on the extra treatments to get it off early! On the bright side, it had another two weeks healing before it came off so it’s probably better in the long run.
“Even with the metal work on I was riding a scooter around but I haven’t ridden a proper bike since the accident so Monday night was the first time! I only had the cage off last Tuesday so I’ve only recently been able to stand on one leg on that foot but I’ve had a lot of help from the hyperbaric chamber on the Isle of Man and the corresponding physio, two sessions each day since I’ve been on the Island and that has helped no end get rid of the swelling.”