Isle Of Man TT - Bob McIntyre

The phrase "doing the ton" is typically associated with the Rockers movement, as caf racers gathered at the Ace would drop a coin in the jukebox, then sprint down the motorway to the roundabout and back. If they returned before the Animals' "House of the Rising Sun" was done playing, they'd averaged better than 100 mph.

A more heroic feat was that achieved by Bob McIntyre during the 50th Anniversary Isle of Man TT in 1957. Riding a Gilera 500cc four, the hard-riding 28-year-old Scot became the first racer in history to "do the ton" around the legendary 37.73-mile Mountain circuit. His best lap was at an average speed of 101.03 mph.

Gilera was the brand to beat in those days before MV Agusta dominated, with Geoff Duke racking up three world championships for the Italian brand. The '57 season was notable in another sense as well, as it was the last in which Grand Prix bikes were permitted to use fully encompassing "dustbin" fairings. From '58 until today, racing rules have required the front wheel to be visible.

McIntyre won both the Senior and Junior TTs in '57, and won the Formula 1 race on a Norton in '59. He signed with Honda for '61, and while the Japanese bikes were fast, they suffered endless mechanical problems. He was sadly killed in a short-circuit race at England's Oulton Park in '62. But as we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the TT this year, we remember McIntyre as the manliest man at Man-the first racer to "do the ton" at the Island.