Learn the fastest line around the friendly Mallory Park circuit with Niall Mackenzie
Mallory Park may only be 1.3 miles long but this famous Leicestershire circuit will still give you plenty of thrills per lap. Although cars still race on the original circuit, bikes have to use the Edwina and Bus Stop chicanes however these sections are good fun and provide interesting challenges for riders. For BSB an additional chicane (Charlies) is incorporated mid way through Gerards which I feel is a waste of time as it seems to cause more crashes than it prevents.
Like Cadwell Park, Mallory’s high bankings provide excellent spectator viewing especially near the hairpin where you stand virtually above riders as they attempt to muscle their machines round one of the tightest turns in the UK. And then there is the legendary Mallory Café where the lovely, ‘mature’ ladies prepare the best English Breakfasts and lunchtime Shepherd’s Pie. I have to say on my last visit the old boy serving me sneezed on my chips but as Pig Flu didn’t ensue I’ve let him off.
Although I’ve won on 250s, 350s and Superbikes round Mallory my most memorable race was in 1998 when I was slugging it out for the win with Troy Bayliss. He lost the front half way round the hairpin and I landed on top of him causing a traffic jam for the guys behind. Normally I would have been well pissed off but it was pretty funny plus I always found there was very little to dislike about Bayliss.
At a brisk pace you’ll get round Mallory Park in under a minute however a lot of action will be packed into that sixty seconds and you’ll feel it. The short straights, heavy braking and physical chicanes give a good work out so make sure you quit when you feel tired. On hot days I always fancy a dip in the lake. But then if Les McKeown and Great Uncle Bulgaria have been in there then maybe it’s not such a good idea.
Over the years ‘the friendly circuit’ has held some big meetings but Mallory’s crowning glory and the one closest to my heart was back in 1975. Nearly 50,000 people witnessed the Tartan clad Bay City Rollers performing ‘Bye Bye Baby' while the Wombles bombed round the lake in a speedboat. That was proper rock and roll, man...
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