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TT ZERO SWITCHED OFF

The Isle of Man Government’s Department for Enterprise (DfE), wearing its TT race promoter hat, has temporarily dropped the one-lap TT Zero event for electric bikes after 10 years, in the face of dwindling entries.

In 2019, there were only nine contestants, and seven finishers, and a blatant lack of interest from spectators. TT Zero had essentially become nothing more than a showcase for Honda associate Mugen, which provided a pair of multi-million-dollar prototypes for star riders to clear off at the sharp end.  
 
This decision has been characterised by DfE organisers as holding a “moratorium” on TT Zero class participation in the TT race schedule in both 2020 and 2021, allowing “a broader dialogue with stakeholders, including teams and manufacturers, to develop and expand the class, building on the success to date and working with the industry to establish long-term plans for clean emission motorcycle racing and technology development on the Isle of Man.”

Presumably any revival three years hence will depend on establishing level-playing-field competition. One choice could be a control-bike formula, similar to MotoGP’s MotoE championship reliant on identical machines sourced from a single manufacturer. An alternative might involve developing technical homologation rules to govern a range of modified high-performance production e-bikes from various brands.

 

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