Paraplegic’s TT challenge right on track thanks to Motorlings

Paul Barkshire, director at MotorLings, has sponsored paraplegic motorcycle rider Phil Armes's chall

Paul Barkshire, director at MotorLings, has sponsored paraplegic motorcycle rider Phil Armes's challenge of conquering the Isle of Man TT course. - Credit: supplied

Paraplegic motorcycle rider Phil Armes's bid to conquer the Isle of Man TT course is being sponsored by MotorLings at Lowestoft.

The dealership, relaunched after a multi-million pound refurbishment after a tidal surge flooded its site which sells Honda and Mitsubishi cars and Honda and Triumph motorcycles, has supplied him with a new Triumph Daytona 675. It will be modified with a handlebar-operated gear change, dual brake lever and specially-adapted footrests.

Mr Armes, a former international motorcycle racer who used to work at Lings Honda's Watton branch, was paralysed in an accident in 1995 at the Ulster Grand Prix. In 2013 he got back on a solo motorcycle to take part in the Manx Grand Prix past winners parade lap. After months of practice and preparation a technical issue forced him to retire after 24of the 37.75 miles. Now undaunted, he is determined to ride in the Classic TT parade lap on August 25.

With an overwhelming response to his efforts last year he has set himself a 12-month programme of activities with other high-profile events, ending with an emotional return to Northern Ireland in August next year for a lap of the Ulster Grand Prix course on the 20th anniversary of his accident.

He will also visit spinal injury rehabilitation units in the UK to talk to patients and staff and raise money for two charities – Spinal Research and The Bike Experience.

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Maxxis Tyres, along with Motorex Oil and DID chain, have also agreed to sponsor him over the 12 months.

'This is particularly good news as it means that most of the bike preparation and Isle of Man costs are covered so I can concentrate on riding and raising money for the two charities,' said Mr Armes.

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'I can't thank MotorLings enough. To supply a new Triumph Daytona is above and beyond. It feels a bit like coming home as I rode a CBR600 Honda for Lings Honda in the Isle of Man TT races in 1987 and 1988. On that occasion I broke the lap record but I don't think we'll be repeating that level of speed this time!'

MotorLings director Paul Barkshire said: 'We at MotorLings are really proud to be able to support Phil in his quest to conquer the Isle of Man. It is, without doubt, an incredible challenge and we wish Phil every success in completion of this daring feat.

'He has a determined can-do attitude and my whole team is rooting for him.'

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