Balls of Steel that are Unmatched! (OT)


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Messages 1 - 51 of total 51 in this topic
The Chief

Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Topic Author's Original Post - Jan 21, 2013 - 10:11am PT
There is no one that can match the intensity nor the courage these dudes exhibit each year. Many have died. But they keep coming back.


Winning is grand but simply finishing and surviving is an accomplishment like nothing else.


Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Jan 21, 2013 - 11:24am PT
Is it as fun as kite boarding?

Jan 21, 2013 - 11:25am PT
There have been 239 deaths over the race's history; winning speed is currently an average of 120+mph over the length of the race.


Technically expert, safe belayer, can lead if easy
Jan 21, 2013 - 11:26am PT
I thought this thread was about Barack's inauguration.

I'd agree with that.
Mark Hudon

Trad climber
Hood River, OR
Jan 21, 2013 - 11:36am PT
I'm speechless!

Trad climber
Jan 21, 2013 - 11:45am PT
I can't even imagine what it takes to do something like this!

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Jan 21, 2013 - 11:46am PT
I'd feel safer free soloing.
Ron Anderson

Trad climber
Soon to be Nipple suckling Liberal
Jan 21, 2013 - 11:47am PT
I can imagine,,, imagine it would take SOMEONE ELSE to ride those rockets...

Wonder if they all lived?

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Jan 21, 2013 - 11:51am PT
Since they don't let out their frustrations on the Zulus, Boers, or French
any more they still have this outlet.

Cardiff by the sea
Jan 21, 2013 - 12:02pm PT
I couldn't agree more with the thread title!

Trad climber
Nevada City
Jan 21, 2013 - 12:12pm PT
wow. damn.

Trad climber
Jan 21, 2013 - 02:25pm PT
Absolutely incredible. I can't even picture myself racing something like that, but I'm glad that such a race exists, and that "normal" (if I'm correct) people are allowed to compete in it.
Thing is, you have to recon the course, and "practice", so you are probably endangering people all througout the year.
Can't imagine onsighting that race !

The Larry

Moab, UT
Jan 21, 2013 - 02:46pm PT

Social climber
Jan 21, 2013 - 04:09pm PT
Great video. Thanks, The Chief.

Had a friend who raced there, back in the late 70s. Tom Hurley. He had a Yamaha 350, 2 stroke, water cooled, as I recall, very light and very fast. Before the race, he'd take it out, race around his home-town--no muffler, no lights, no plates. But it was fast enough, and he knew the streets and back-alleys well enough, he could get away if the cops saw him (or heard him!).

He came close to winning in his size race on the Isle of Man, once or twice. Once he ran out of gas, just a half-mile or less shy of finishing first.

He was given the nickname Suicide Hurley by other competitors because, poor as he was, he would ride on stock (rear, at least) drum brakes, which of course would heat up and not work so well after braking hard (from around 200mph to maybe 50 or less) into the curves.

A great friend, fun climbing partner of the old school, not very fit, did not care about ratings or numbers, but utterly fearless, a fun-loving daredevil. He eventually died in the Alps, a careless slip during a bivouac.

Watching that video, now, in 2013, it all looks crazy dangerous. But forty years ago that was the appeal of climbing, too, which was an inherently dangerous sport, and the best climbers were daredevils, who would risk their lives for the sheer fun of it.

Trad climber
East Coast US
Jan 21, 2013 - 04:24pm PT
The Larry's video is way more terrifying.

Northern Mexico
Jan 21, 2013 - 04:25pm PT
In the Ukraine crane climbs you


Sport climber
Boulder, Colorado!
Jan 21, 2013 - 04:26pm PT
Scary stuff. Have you seen the Romanian motorcycle races? It's not fast, but it's rough. Crazy stuff!

Trad climber
Jan 21, 2013 - 04:33pm PT
Been on my bucket list to take in the TT in person. It is such a cool remnant of times past. Great to see a community stand behind the tradition that exists here. Liability be damned.

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Jan 21, 2013 - 06:16pm PT
Good one, TFPU.

Anybody who Free Solos could do this if they wanted to.

It's all in your head, Free Solo or Go Fast.

In climbing you must believe in YOUR SKILLS

In racing you must believe in YOUR SKILLS

When the time comes to race or to climb, you just gotta push the fear of death out of your head and get down to the busness at hand.

And at the TT... the really outragious stuff goes on between the heats when they open up the roads for a while so you can ride to another bar and have somemore beers.

Zoom Zoom

Trad climber
East Coast
Jan 21, 2013 - 07:24pm PT
I posted this clip on Klaus' moto thread. I think you'll like it. How dangerous has the TT race been for spectators?
The Chief

Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 22, 2013 - 10:24am PT
So did the guys involved in the big 4 crashes on the bike video die?


That was in 2010 and he came back in 2011 to win the Supersport TT Race 2.

Pretty amazing.

The tenacity and perseverance that these incrdible dudes exhibit, year after year.

Guy Martin be one of them guys that has repeatedly crashed hard, busted his ass up good and just keeps coming back....


Trad climber
mt. hood /baja
Jan 22, 2013 - 11:52am PT
bump for HOLY SHIZZLE ! gotta have some iron stones..
if I had to choose between that and free soloin the Nose
I'd be chalkin up

Jan 22, 2013 - 11:54am PT
No .... you wouldn't, talk is cheap ^^^^^^

Trad climber
mt. hood /baja
Jan 22, 2013 - 11:59am PT
you're right werner I wouldn't ...

Trad climber
Jan 22, 2013 - 06:06pm PT
Balls of Steel, Brain of Wood

Jan 22, 2013 - 06:14pm PT
Holy F$ck!!!! OT but thanks for posting!!!!


Jan 22, 2013 - 06:21pm PT
another cool isle of man TT video

The Chief

Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 22, 2013 - 06:21pm PT
Here is another well done shorty.

God I love it!


Jan 22, 2013 - 06:21pm PT
Mad Max redux
The user formerly known as stzzo

Sneaking up behind you
Jan 22, 2013 - 08:04pm PT

Some good ones:

Bird's eye.

Saddle view.

More fun.


Social climber
Right outside of Delacroix
Jan 22, 2013 - 10:58pm PT
Mike the Bike (not at Man)

Mountain climber
Jan 22, 2013 - 11:21pm PT
the real beauty of this race is that it's done for nothing but love of sport.

the winners take home a max of only ~$48k per class won, or barely enough to cover the cost of running just this race [pit crews, bike costs, transportation, etc].

and as someone else mentioned almost 250 deaths in the 105 years that it has been run.

i have a friend who races targa in newfoundland [a closed circuit time trial format car race run through and between small towns in newfoundland]. this is not him, but is from the same course:

just watching his dash cam videos make my hands sweat. but at least he has a co-driver to help with navigation.

otoh, the isle of man competitors are racing essentially blind until they are able to memorize the 200 bends and 38 mile course. this article says racers take an average of 3 years just to get to know the course. jesus f*#king christ.

oh well, another place/event to add to the bucket list - and i have no delusions that i'll be doing anything but happily spectating! thanks for the initial post T.C.

[and if you've got 50 min. to kill, the same article linked above has a good documentary with interesting interviews and stories from behind the scenes of the 2012 race.]

Trad climber
Mt. Rubidoux
Jan 23, 2013 - 08:50am PT
Ha, Ha, Ha........Lance Amstrong would have those guys for breakfast.

Social climber
Jan 23, 2013 - 08:59am PT
Ha, Ha, Ha........Lance Amstrong would have those guys for breakfast.

Impossible. He only has one ball and it's filled with fake old hardened silicone. First turn (Turn 1 Bray Hill) he'd impact the Post Office straight on and be history. Dead! The only thing left would be the old hardened left nut rolling down the road.
rick d

ol pueblo, az
Jan 23, 2013 - 09:09am PT
yer maun, Joey Dunlop won 26 TT's.

twenty six.

they also have a go kart race on same "track" where the cars go 150mph!

Jan 23, 2013 - 09:11am PT
If your just realizing this race is taking place you've been living under a rock.

Any motorcyclist who knows anything about a motorcycle knows about this race. It makes those guys on tracks look like children.

How about a Yos TT start at the mobile station race through the park to the 120 entrance and then hang a right to angels camp hang another right go over Sonora and back to the mobile station.

Wide f*#king open winner takes all.

Check out the side cars and yes people die doing this race and while sad they die, what do you expect when you hit a rock wall at 140 plus

The Chief

Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 23, 2013 - 09:29am PT
One of the few "Track" Grand Prix Champions that also rode and won the IOM, 10 times. This dude was and still is a master of the bike. A humble living Legend!

right here, right now
Jan 23, 2013 - 10:25am PT
Isle of Man: hallowed ground in motorsport.
Mr. Rogers

The Land of Make-Believe
Jan 23, 2013 - 11:24am PT
I think stzzo posted the video of this lap earlier, but this version has commentary by the driver (Guy Martin).

It's basically move-by-move beta for the full track. I know nothing about biking and I found it fascinating.

He starts talking, quite fast actually, at around the 25 second mark.
The Chief

Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 23, 2013 - 11:28am PT
And this is one of the living "Legend" of the IOMTT with the actual rig he rode:

As well as this one of the "King of the Mountain", Joey Dunlop.


Social climber
Right outside of Delacroix
Jan 25, 2013 - 03:31am PT
The King of Man is Mike the Bike.

The Chief

Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 25, 2013 - 10:00am PT
Sorry Gary, Mike the Bike only won 14TT's.

John McGuinness surpassed him three races ago and now has 19TT wins.

But no ONE comes close to...

Joey Dunlop "King of the Mountain Road" (for the Mountain Course, Isle of Man TT) with 26TT Wins....

His achievements include three hat-tricks at the Isle of Man TT meeting (1985, 1988 and 2000), where he won a record 26 races in total.

King of the Road’ Joey Dunlop OBE MBE first saw the course in 1976 as he set off for his first practice - he went home with two replicas. The first of his record breaking 26 wins came in the 1977 Jubilee Classic Race. He won the TT Formula 1 Race six years in a row between 1983 and 1988 and was Formula 1 World Champion five times. He is the only rider to have three hat-tricks to his name - 1985 F1, Senior and Junior, 1988 F1, Senior and Junior and in 2000 the Formula One, Lightweight and Ultra Lightweight. He has lapped the course at over 110 mph in races 256 times and has more 120mph plus laps to his credit than any other rider in the history of the races. He started in 100 races on the TT course, 98 TT and two Classic MGP Junior Races. His astounding record of successes speak for themselves. Altogether Joey’s 26 TT wins include 7 Formula 1, 4 Senior, 3 Junior, 5 Lightweight and 5 UltraLightweight Races, plus the 1977 Jubilee Race and the 1980 Classic 1000. During TT2000, at the age of 48, Joey counted the magnificent win in the Duke Formula One as one of his most rewarding. In his final lap of the TT circuit – the sixth lap of the Senior Race - he set his fastest ever lap at 123.87mph to become joint fourth fastest man around the course.


Apr 8, 2013 - 01:34am PT

Awesome! Thanks for sharing. Great day today. 7 pitches and some riding. The canyon had pretty much no sand and was very sticky. Perfect turns! Felt like a fresh powder day.

And I wasn't much over 45 mph! Just a great day...


Trad climber
Truckee, CA
Apr 8, 2013 - 01:58am PT
Just from the photos that guy looks like somebody you really wouldn't want to get on the wrong side of in a bar. And when you consider that insane and fearless racing record...whoooeee. Hard to imagine anyone equaling that in any other high-speed racing discipline. But of course someone will post up to the contrary inside of 10 minutes, I suppose.

Trad climber
Hustle City
Apr 8, 2013 - 09:53am PT
Shoving the envelope!
Dapper Dan

Trad climber
Menlo Park
Nov 29, 2014 - 11:43am PT
I really enjoyed some of these Isle of Man TT vids...
Sierra Ledge Rat

Mountain climber
Old and Broken Down in Appalachia
Nov 29, 2014 - 03:57pm PT
I'd feel safer free soloing.


Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Nov 29, 2014 - 06:00pm PT
"prepare for ludicrous speed"
Sierra Ledge Rat

Mountain climber
Old and Broken Down in Appalachia
Nov 29, 2014 - 07:17pm PT
Balls of Steel that are Unmatched!

You mean Brains of Sh#t that are Unmatched?
Bad Climber

Nov 30, 2014 - 07:20am PT
I don't think so, Rat. If one guy can win it 26 phreakin' times, that means it's possible to do it well and with some degree of safety. Do you think all the high-end alpinists have sh*t brains, too? I'm really inspired by these guys even if I have ABSOLUTELY no desire to try it. Just like I'll never speed climb the Captain or do any number of things we celebrate as outdoor athletes. Remember, there are vast numbers of people who think what YOU have done as a roped climber means you have sh*t for brains. To even consider riding the Isle of Man means a rider must have some considerable experience and skill, something non-riders/non-racers can hardly imagine--just like my dear old mum had absolutely NO idea what to think beyond sheer terror for her son and worry of his sanity when I showed her pictures of climbing El Capitan when I was 18.

I'm thinking if we had a short video of rock climbers in action with many bad grounders, ledge-outs, and various, sundry crashes and disasters spliced in to the rockin' sound track, we could pretty easily create a similar effect of madness about our sport.

The Chief

Laughing at all you angry blinded Sheep
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 30, 2014 - 08:16am PT
Would never expect folks like SLR or the rest here to even get it let alone understand. Nope.

But for those that may be curious as to the mindset it necessitates to go out week after week and ride in these type events, well, here....

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