David Jefferies At Oliver's Mount Roadrace

Amateur video of The Big Man fooling around at the classic north coast roadrace

The late David Jefferies was one of the all-time great roadracing personalities. And with nine Isle of Man TT wins—three per week in three consecutive visits—DJ was one of the most successful racers to ever visit the Island. The Big Man was a down-to-earth guy whose typically salty wit and colorful turns of phrase made him a fan favorite, as this home video proves. The footage, taken at the Oliver's Mount roadrace (a.k.a. the Cock O' the North), is completely focused on Jefferies. It'd be a bit stalkerish, but Jefferies always did find a way to steal the show.

David Jefferies on Suzuki GSX-R1000
David Jefferies at the Isle of Man aboard the TAS Suzuki GSX-R1000.foTTofinder

There's some brief footage of Ian Lougher (nice shorts, Ian!), and John McGuinness, but mostly a lot of Jefferies fooling around and pulling wheelies on the famous red and yellow V&M Yamaha YZF-R1. As the R1 races ahead of McGuinness' Paul Bird Motorsport Honda NSR500V two-stroke twin, you can't help but feel it's one of the greatest sounds ever recorded. That is until a Cagiva GP500, some ex-Sheene Suzukis, and Neil Hodgson on the silver and orange GSE Ducati make an appearance. You can almost smell the burning race fuel.

The video features very little actual racing action, but it’s a snapshot of what we love about roadracing and motorcycle culture. There’s something paradoxically charming about the peaceful rolling hills of the north coast of England disrupted by menacing machines ridden flat out. “So it’s come to this,” you might say as a machine roars past a nearby hedge. And the whole thing is made all the more spectacular by the men whose rare mix of skill and daring would seem deranged but that we’d all trade our souls for a taste of such masterful riding and command over fear.