There have been 240 rider deaths in the 106 years the Isle of Man TT motorcycle race has been running. Statistically, it is the most dangerous race in the world, attracting racers with a penchant for life on the edge. One of the most colourful characters in the paddock is the wooly-haired and steely-eyed Guy Martin, who recently contested the British record for outright speed on a bicycle — on a custom-built Rourke frameset.
Apart from contesting the Tourist Trophy, Guy fosters a deep interest in historical industry and craftsmanship, which has led to a slew of TV shows for the BBC. His latest series, ‘Speed with Guy Martin’, focuses on his love for going fast, by documenting exploits such as building and piloting the fastest ever human powered aircraft, attempting to set the world record for a hydroplaning motorcycle and contesting the British land speed record on a pushie — in the slipstream of a 1000hp racing lorry.
With such a fascination with British industry, it’s no surprise that Guy teamed up with the team at Rourke Framesets, who have been building custom bikes for over 41 years. Constructed from Reynolds 853, Guy’s frame features a wrap-over seat stay, a trademark of the Stoke-on-Trent builder. The attempt took place at Pendine Sands in Wales, where Sir Malcolm Campbell recorded his times in his legendary Bluebird.