For anyone with a love of motorcycle racing, one of the world’s great events takes place next weekend, August 20/21, just outside the tiny Belgian town of Gedinne, deep in the densely wooded hills of the Ardennes.
The Belgian Classic TT is truly a step back into a different era. With an entry of over 200 of Europe’s top classic motorcycle racers the competition is fierce, unrelenting and spectacular. The course, laid out over 3.43 miles of cow pat spattered, mud covered country lanes which turn and twist through the ditch lined hills, is straight from the Golden Age of GP racing. A Grand Prix star from 1950 would feel completely at home in Gedinne in 2011.
There is a myriad of classes ranging from screaming 50s to the boom and snarl of Manx classic Nortons and Matchless G50s which were the apogee of racing technology in 1960 – and everything in between.
Being able to sit on a grass bank six inches away from these classic thoroughbreds hammering past at 120 mph is reason enough to visit Gedinne.
The other reason is the admission price. $15 gives you a two-day ticket and free camping. Apart from the racing, there are a couple of highly addictive Belgian Frites vans, a truly enormous beer tent – and the company of hardcore race fans drawn from all over the world. Corporate MotoGP this is not!
Gedinne is about four hours from Calais and a couple of hours from the center of Brussels.