Isle of Man coins celebrate famed motorcycle racing legends
- Published: May 20, 2015, 2 AM
An annual motorcycle race on the Isle of Man, and seven of the most successful racers, are being honored with new coins from the Isle of Man.
The Pobjoy Mint has issued Uncirculated copper-nickel and Proof .925 fine silver 50-pence coins celebrating Tourist Trophy motorcycle race legends on behalf of the Isle of Man.
The Isle of Man Tourist Trophy races are time trials held annually on 37.73 miles of public roads, closed down for the competition. The TT race is the oldest motorcycle racing circuit still in use — the first race was held in 1907 and the current race course has been in use since 1911.
The 2015 race is scheduled from May 30 to June 12.
Racing in the event requires skill, bravery and concentration, according to the Pobjoy Mint, as riders traverse the Snaefell Mountain Course at speeds approaching 200 miles-per-hour.
The central design of the coin reverses shows two motorcyclists racing on the course, with the race's logo above. The names of the motorcycling stars appear around the rim of the coin.
The stars honored include Geoff Duke, the British multi-time motorcycle Grand Prix road racing world champion who dominated motorcycle racing in the 1950s, winning six World Championships and six Isle of Man TT Races.
Mike Hailwood, who is regarded as one of the greatest racers of all time (his nickname is “Mike the Bike”) earned 14 TT victories and nine World Championship titles.
John McGuinness started his winning ways at the Isle of Man TT in 1999, and in 2013 he added his 20th victory to the record books.
Italian racer Giacomo Agostini, a skilful and courageous rider, rode in just 16 TT races but won ten of them.
David Jefferies was a six-time winner, having first rode in the TT in 1996 and took the newcomers award. In 1999 Jefferies joined the elite band of riders to record a hat-trick with victories in the Formula One, Production and Senior, a feat he repeated in 2000 and 2001.
Bob McIntyre secured his place in TT history as the first man to break 100 miles-per-hour on a motorbike, which in 1957 was a major achievement.
Joey Dunlop, the “King of the Road,” was voted the fifth greatest motorcycling icon ever in 2005. During his time in the TT races, he earned a record-breaking 26 wins.
The obverse of each coin bears a couped effigy of Queen Elizabeth II, Lord of Man, by Ian Rank-Broadley.
Both coins weigh 8 grams and measure 27.3 millimeters in diameter.
The copper-nickel coin has an unlimited mintage and costs $16.95.
The Proof coin is limited to 5,000 pieces and costs $69.
To view these coins, visit the Pobjoy Mint website.