Motorcycle Track Guides

Motorcycle Track Guide: Anglesey

Revel in the delights of Anglesey, Wales’ best, and quite possibly Britain’s best track. Niall Mackenzie is happy to take you round

Like many first time visitors to Anglesey I wasn’t sure what to expect after a long hike up the A5 to the top corner of North Wales. The circuit approach narrows down to nothing more than a farm track, but once in the paddock a circuit appears that would rival many on the current BSB calendar.

The surface, layout and safety here are first class, not to mention the stunning coastal backdrop which is pretty when the sun shines. But beware – it can also deliver the harshest Welsh weather. Power and shelter are limited in the paddock (hence no BSB here yet) but the café is excellent.

Anglesey also has a superb website (angleseycircuit.com), but the best thing is the track surface – grippy and wide. It’s also very consistent with no sections that unexpectedly tighten up and no hidden surprises if you happen to run off line. You can see most of the corners ahead and if you get in a little hot then simply rolling off the gas should see you stay on the black stuff.

Sector One: Start/Finish to Rocket

Sector One: Start/Finish to Rocket

With my R6 on standard gearing I approach the left of turn one in third gear using all the track on entry and also on the exit. This is a straightforward 90-degree left but it’s fast so you’ll need plenty of laps to master it 100%. The next short straight is similar in length to the start finish so third will easily get you down to the next third gear right hander called The Banking.

A wide approach works well here but then try to find a late apex for a fast run out and down the 4th gear straight to the awesome right hander of Church. This is a ‘big balls’ steady in/fast out section so start by finding a ‘rolling off the throttle marker’ on the approach and build up your speed and confidence in slow motion – first without braking. Once up to pace you may find you need a gentle dab on the brakes on entry but just before the apex you should be back on the throttle and accelerating up through fifth gear round this never ending super fast right-hander. Once out of Church I like to use the entire track on the left as this helps me set up a straight run in to the uphill approach to Rocket. You’ll find there are a few different lines that work round here, but be careful not to rush up the inside of other riders or they could cut your nose off which could lead to disaster for both parties.

Sector Two: Rocket to Seamans

Sector Two: Rocket to Seamans

The second gear left/right section of Rocket comes up megafast and it also turns back on itself – so the best of us all run wide here at some point. Hard, hard braking while you’re upright is the key and then turn in early staying tight to the left.  Then get ready for a quick change of direction before the nice sweep into the downhill horseshoe right.

You should then hug this kerb, gradually building some corner-speed but only giving full gas when you’re almost upright and have spotted an exit point out on the left.  I get third gear along this short blast then back to second using some engine braking as I make use of all the track on the left into the Peel right-hander. This is a long bend exiting over a crest but it is best to use only 50% of the tarmac on the exit as you need to swing back to the right for the downhill run into the left of Seamans.

Sector Three: Seamans/Corkscrew to Start/Finish

Sector Three: Seamans/Corkscrew to Start/Finish

Depending on the circuit layout you’re using you’ll either turn left along the Tom Pryde Straight or take the shorter left/right/left plunge down through the Corkscrew section onto the Start /finish straight.

The Corkscrew may not be quite California and Laguna Seca but this second gear section is still challenging and exciting. You should be gently trail braking into it with a final squeeze on the lever as you get upright before flicking hard to the right using half the track on the way out. A quick squeeze on the throttle will send you down to the final corner and you shouldn’t need to touch the brakes here as it’s then smooth acceleration over the ripples out onto the start/finish.

On the longer circuit you’ll use all the track on the exit of Seamans and grab fourth gear before braking hard for the second gear 180-degree hairpin. This one is as straightforward as they come; so wide in, clip apex in the middle, and use all the tarmac on the exit before blasting down in fourth gear to the final left. After braking hard and shifting back to second I like to get an early apex then build momentum all the way round but only reaching the edge of the track once I’m safely onto the start/finish straight and putting the power properly down.

Anglesey has a relatively short lap time but throws everything at you. It’s safe, but you need to stay sharp through the fast and technical sections. I don’t know anyone who’s gone there and not left planning a return. I’m definitely heading up there on my S1000RR to test all that BMW electronica. Last time I even picked up some Welsh... “Rrrollling stopeee boyo.”

Read more of Niall Mackenzie's guides to the best circuits in the UK

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