The annual Nifty 50 endurance event returned yesterday to Mondello Park providing a thoroughly entertaining day out for riders and spectators alike.
Now in its 10th year, the charity driven run goes from strength to strength managed meticulously by Blackchurch racing’s Ed Byrne. A packed field of 46 teams entered this year with an International cross section of riders from the UK, Isle of Man complimenting the strong contingent of Irish riders from the length and breadth of the country.
The day began for some well before 8am as the scrutiny bay opened for business, where the MCI Technical team provided this service free of charge. A flag seminar and anti-doping talk was given by Terry and Sheila Logan just before the start, who also kindly gave up their day to volunteer as Clerk of the Course.
Some yellow flag indiscretions were reported during the practise session, so before the start another briefing was given to remind the participants about the importance of safety during the charity event.
The pandemonium Le Mans start created the first talking point of the day as over-enthusiasm got the better of some riders who bolted early, meaning a restart was necessary and all riders were ushered back to the start\finish. This time, all went according to plan and the madness ensued.
As the day progressed, the misty drizzle disappeared and some dry mild weather graced the drying track allowing lap times to drop. Some talented entrants had made the best of the tricky damp conditions and by mid-afternoon had built up a healthy lead. The rate of attrition then began to take its toll or machine and rider alike and the recovery truck was kept busy bringing battered bikes back to the pit lane for duct tape and cable ties but, by and large most teams last the distance from flag to flag. The afternoon flew in the sunshine and at 3.30 the chequered flag was raised ending a terrific event and another highly successful day where 44 of the 46 teams entered also finished.
1st Team Cider
2nd Blue Light Bastardos
3rd Epic Failure
2nd Knee Down Racing
3rd Manly Racing
1st The Old Peculiars
Images from John Burke