Mountain Course

Mountain course 1920 - 1949
1920-1949
 
1920 saw the Snaefell Mountain Course extended to its present length of 37.73-miles, with the start-finish just a few metres down the road from the present Grandstand.
 
The main points on the course at the start of the decade were Bray Hill, Quarter Bridge, Braddan Bridge, Union Mills, Crosby, Ballacraine, Ballig Bridge, Glen Helen, Creg Willies Hill, Kirk Michael, Ballaugh Bridge, Sulby Bridge, Ramsey, Ramsey Hairpin, Gooseneck, East Snaefell gate, Bungalow, Windy Corner, Keppel Gate, Creg-ny-Baa, Hillberry, Cronk-ny-Mona, Signpost Corner and Governor’s Bridge.
 
The course was widened at Sulby Bridge in 1923, whilst Parliament Square to May Hill was used for the first time, instead of riders going through Ramsey Town to join the present course at May Hill.
 
Brandish Corner was given its name in 1923, after Walter Brandish crashed there and broke a leg. Birkin’s Bend was added, after, sadly, Archie Birkin was killed there in 1927 during practice, when the roads were only closed for racing. The following year practising took place on closed roads.
 
By 1926, the course had been improved considerably and the Mountain Section had been tarmaced.
 
The Guthrie Memorial Cairn was erected on the spot where Jimmy Guthrie retired in his final race, the Senior TT of 1937. He was killed later in the year, at the German Grand Prix.
 
Drinkwater’s Bend is where Ben Drinkwater was fatally injured in the Junior TT of 1949. Handley’s Bend was named in recognition of Wal Handley who crashed there a race. He was killed during the Second World War, his last TT year being 1934.
 
Finally Tate’s became known as Kate’s Cottage. It is widely thought that a commentator mispronounced the word and it stuck as Kate's. The BBC began broadcasting the races live after the Second World War.
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