Wednesday 7 September 2022

A nostalgic return

If you've ever attended the Isle of Man TT, you'll have seen the flashes and heard the clicks of hundreds of cameras as the riders fly by – often literally – at truly awe inspiring speeds. One regular visitor to the island, who has been attending since the late sixties, is Adrian Ashurst, a retired registered nurse from Wigan. And a serious amateur photographer.

Douglas Bay; Adrian's subjects are by no means limited to two wheels

Adrian, with copies
of Ted's books

At 69 years young, Adrian has photographed the excitement and drama of many outstanding an memorable moments at the TT and the MGP over the last 50 years. Returning, this year, to the Manx Grand Prix, Adrian endeavoured to capture the unique atmosphere of the road races from vantage points he's not visited before.   

And Adrian has form. His carefully chosen vantage points have made for some dramatic photos, many of which have appeared in newspapers and magazines, as well as many other publications and blogs. They have also been used extensively to illustrate Ted Macauley's Mike the Bike - Again, providing genuine behind-the-scenes personal insights into racing legend Mike Hailwood's successful return to the TT races in 1978 and 1979. 

Adrian and the late Pauline
Hailwood on the IoM

More recently, Adrian's photographs can be seen illustrating Ted Macauley's new autobiography, Raring to Go! Ted was not only Mike Hailwood's manager, but his best friend, and Ted's book is full of many interesting stories regarding the racer and his exploits. It's also full of famous and celebrity names – Barry Sheene, George Best, James Toseland, Ringo Star, Michael Caine … and that's just a fraction. 

As you can imagine, after 50 years of photographing riders and machines hooning around the streets of the Isle of Man, Adrian has a pretty hefty photographic archive, covering decades of on-track action and trackside excitement, so it's great to see some of these make it into the public eye. 

As Adrian said;

As a serious amateur photographer it is great to see some of my work being published. 


My advice to those visiting the MGP for the first time is to always keep safe and listen carefully to the experienced marshals and capture some great photographs at places like Ballaugh Bridge and Governor's Bridge. 


The island provides me with the opportunity to visit areas of natural beauty and the opportunity to reflect on great memories whilst eating my fish and chips by the harbour at Port Erin with friends.

John McGuinness at Ballaugh Bridge and Governor’s Bridge, Isle of Man

You can see some of Adrian's two-wheel focussed handy work, and read all about the incredible story of Mike Hailwood's triumphant return to TT racing in Mike the Bike – AGAIN!, available for only £15.99 (ex. P&P).

And for another great dose of insider-knowledge, checkout Ted's autobiography, Raring to Go!, a fascinating account of his life and adventures in journalism – and including some very famous names – for only £16.99 (ex. P&P).

Or, save yourself a tidy sum by buying the two books together! Save £13.20 off the RRP with our Ted Macauley Twin Pack at just £19.78 (ex. P&P)!