Anne Garnish, Hertfordshire
I came to bikes later than most, learning to ride and taking my test at the age of 33. I immediately started doing track days on my SV650 and in 2006 I raced an NC30 and visited the TT for the first time where I started marshalling. It was after the 2008 TT that I met sidecar driver Wayne ‘Bob The Builder’ Lockey and started chatting so in 2009 he took me to Mallory for a test in early September. 10 days later I did my first sidecar race with Bob, achieving a 5th and 3rd place.
Less than a month later we competed in the Bemsee Championship race at Thruxton, where we went from the back of the grid of over 30 sidecars to place 10th overall, 3rd in the championship and 1st F2. I was hooked! In 2010 I started the season with Stu Stobbart, moving to novice driver Dean Nicholls on a Baker Thundercat later in the year. Dean and I formed Team Lick Racing in 2011 and raced together until the end of April 2012. We achieved 3rd in the Bemsee and North Glos F2 championships in 2011 and started in the ACU/FSRA F11 British Championship Cup races in 2012, achieving 4th by May 2012.
Later in 2012 I passengered Joe Heys in the FSRA F350 championship on his YPVS Windle Banshee two-stroke, on Dave Ward’s MR Equipe F2, on Brian Illaria’s MR Equipe F2 and with Andy Williams on a Derbyshire Suzuki F1 1100cc bike.
For 2013 I was delighted to be invited to compete at the Isle Of Man TT and Oliver’s Mount rounds with Willow Racing’s David Saunders, on a 600cc Suzuki Kevin Christian chassis F2 sidecar. David taught me a huge amount about road passengering and we were completing a 100mph lap in practice week at the TT when we crashed. Earlier that evening we’d qualified for the main races, so were listed as Non-Starters on the results sheet. As a result of injuries sustained David didn’t return to racing in 2013 but is building a new bike with a view to returning to racing in 2016. I returned to short-circuit racing in September 2013 as a stand-in passenger for the F2s of Julian Cole, Paul Lumley and Simon Smith.
In 2014 I was co-rider with Simon Smith on short circuit, and François (Fanch) Leblond for the 2014 TT. I also had the opportunity to ride with Mike Bellaby, pre-TT Classic winner, on his 1972 BMW front-exit outfit. In 2015 I competed in a couple of rounds of the North Gloucester Championship with Simon, and at the French Sidecar Championship and the TT with Fanch. I retired in summer 2015 after the TT, just before I broke my shoulder falling off my road motorcycle.
I was given my nickname InkyAnn by friend, MGP racer and Manx resident Keith McKay owing to my back tattoo. The tattoo was done in 2004 and 2005 by Woody of High Wycombe, taking over 35 hours needle on skin time to complete. When Sam at Celtic Leathers first put my name on the back of my solo leathers it was shortened from “Inky Anne” to InkyAnn, and the nickname stuck.
I can be contacted by email on: anne @ inkyann dot com