A Fast Lady on the Isle of Man

Daily Mail - 11 May 1993
By David Gardner

RACING round the TT course at 120mph, all the bikers look the same in the blur of speed. It is only in the pits that one of them catches the eye.

When Francesca Giordano takes off her helmet, the cascade of curls proves she is a breed apart from the rest of the field. Next month, the Italian will tackle one of the most dangerous circuits in the world only two years after vowing to do so. She already has the type of sponsorship deal which makes her the envy of her rivals in the Isle of Man classic. An enthusiastic caravan dealer in Italy has provided her with a camper van to use as a base, while Gloucester Kawasaki will provide her with two bikes.

This should help ensure she does not repeat last year's flop - when her machine seized up in practice.

Signorina Giordano is angered by any suggestion that she has had it easy on her route to the top.

"What I've achieved has been through hard work and dedication,' she said. "One of my arms is full of plates and pins from a crash. I've had problems and I've beaten them.

'As far as I am concerned the main advantage of being a female racer is that the men help me lift the bike out of the back of the van.'

She was hooked after taking her Ducati bike to an open day at her local track. One year later she got her big break - literally. She explained: 'I broke my leg three years ago and with the money I got from the insurance payout and my redundancy money - I'd spent so much time off work that they laid me off - I bought an Aprilia 125 and could afford to go racing full time for a year'.

'The only thing most Italians know about the race is that it's dangerous. But I was into classic bikes first, so I knew all about it'.

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