Paul Cassidy revs up for Isle of Man TT

As a business born on the Isle of Man, the TT is a particularly special event for eSIM Go. We’re proud to sponsor Island Fuels Racing’s Paul Cassidy, who has quite literally risen to fame since the North West 200. It’s been a busy few weeks for the Castetown based rider, but he still made the time for a chat ahead of this year’s races.

First of all, how are you doing after making the headlines at the North West 200?

I’m a bit battered and bruised but ok! I know I’m very lucky to be alive and it’s amazing to have come out of it with just a few cuts and bruises.

What happened?

I could see the rider in front had suddenly pulled to the left and I was going to either collide with him or hit the wall, so I had to think fast. I jumped off the bike and ended up 25 feet in the air. Everything went into slow motion and from that high up there’s not much you can do other than hope for the best! So I went into Buzz Lightyear mode and here I am.

The press coverage has gone wild. Were you surprised by the response?

It’s gone mad! I’ve been interviewed by the BBC, Good Morning Britain are coming out to do a report and I think there’s going to be a documentary made about it all. My phone hasn’t stopped ringing. It’s been really positive in that it’s raised awareness of the importance of wearing the right kit - if it wasn’t for the helmet I wouldn’t be here today.

Has life changed since the NW 200?

I’m a lot busier! The video has had over 180,000 views and I’m getting thousands of friend requests and follows from people all over the world. Didn’t expect to become a celebrity overnight but it’s all good.

This is your second Isle of Man TT soon. What does the event mean to you?

It’s the pinnacle of motor racing all over the world so it’s an incredible feeling to be selected to take part. But it’s also got a special place in my heart on a personal level. I moved to the Isle of Man aged 8 so I always watched the races as a child and it was a big family occasion. I always thought the racers were amazing but never dreamed it would be me out there with them one day.

As the biggest and best road race in the world, the TT is notoriously hard to get into. What does it take for a rider to be able to take part?

It’s a really selective process that takes years, and you have to show consistently good results before they’ll even think about letting you in. Even then, it’s definitely not for everyone. You have to accept that it’s a very dangerous race and some people don’t make it, so first and foremost you have to have the right mindset. You need to really know the course and respect it and keep your wits about you at all times.

How are you preparing in the lead up to the event?

I don’t really do anything that different. You need to pass a medical but I'm lucky that I already eat pretty healthily, don’t drink much and have never smoked. Avoiding fatigue is important, so I make sure I get enough sleep and drink plenty of water.

So you don’t need to spend more hours in the gym?

I don’t go to the gym really because it’s bike fitness that counts. Spending hours on the road is like a full body workout, exercising all the right muscle groups. But really it’s mental fitness that’s the most important thing. You can be in perfect physical fitness but if your mind isn’t sharp and you don’t have the reflexes you’ve got no chance.

How do you deal with the danger? Do you do anything in particular to prepare mentally and emotionally?

I don’t really think about it. Obviously everyone knows the risks that are involved with this sport. No matter how good you are, there’s a chance you won’t come back out of it in one piece and you can’t legislate for what other riders do. I’m pretty level headed and I try not to spend my time worrying. The most important thing is to stay focused.

You’ve already won several races including the Scarborough Gold Cup. How did you get to where you are now?

Lots of hard work, practice and determination! Ever since I turned 18 I’ve always wanted to get into it but I didn’t really start properly until I turned 30. It’s a very expensive sport to get involved in, and highly competitive. You also have to have the right team behind you and sponsorship plays a big part. A big thanks to eSIM Go - I’m proud to be wearing the logo!

At eSIM Go we’re all about keeping people connected. What app can’t you live without?

I use my phone for all my social media so I spend a lot of time on Instagram and Facebook, especially since it’s all gone crazy over the past few weeks. I travel a lot, so I’ll be looking forward to using my eSIM the next time I’m abroad.

eSIM Go was born in the Isle of Man, so the TT has a special place in our hearts too. Some of our team and partners will be there cheering you on and the rest of us will be watching at home. Good luck Paul, have fun and stay safe!

Thanks - I’m really looking forward to this year and the bike and kit look amazing. I’ll certainly try my best!

Keep up with all the latest on the Isle of Man TT here

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Photography by James Joyce