If you’re looking for a more involved route to the festival, rather than dull motorways and dual carriageways, here’s a 90-mile, 3-hour ride that takes you from junction 20 on the M1 at Lutterworth (one up from the M6/A14 intersection) through a long loop around Melton Mowbray, then back down to Corby before slinking across to the East Of England Arena, and its burgeoning population of burger vans ready to feed hungry riders.
On the way you’ll bomb along many of MCN’s road testers’ favourite routes, and plenty of corners that have featured in MCN's pages over the years. Also if you come across a bike being ridden round a corner repeatedly and photographed by a strange man standing in a ditch, please don’t wave – it just encourages them...
Ready to go
The run starts on the A4304 heading towards plummy Husbands Bosworth; the road passes through Walcote then, shortly after Kilworth House on your right, turn left towards Shearsby on the B5414. This is a fiendish, kinky little road – well-surfaced, tight and twisty – that spits you out onto the A5199 to Leicester; at the crossroads (with the famous Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground, home to MCN’s speed testing, on your left), turn right to Saddington. Watch out for slow-moving car transporters, farm traffic and fast-moving MCN lunatics.
The road swoops back and forth towards Kibworth Harcourt, then tumbles through classic mid-counties English countryside across the A47 and north to Melton Mowbray, home of pork pies. It's a great place for a pot of tea.
Pick up the B676 and signs for Colsterworth. Barrel along for ten miles or so, enjoying some prime MCN-style cornering, then peel right just outside the postcard village of Buckminster at the Lincolnshire county border, heading towards Sewestern. Straight on to Thistleton, then right to Oakham where, apparently, they poke ’em. Take a left at the roundabout onto the A606 heading for Stamford. Follow the bypass around Oakham, then onto the fast, flowing A6003 and towards Upingham and then onto Corby. You don’t have to ride through Corby, which is just as well, but skirt the ring road past Rockingham Raceway and then collect the A427 as it races towards the posh Northamptonshire town of Oundle. The distressed Shellgrip on the bends at Benefield bears testament to many a footpeg’s last hurrah.
After Oundle (tea and cake at Bean’s Coffee Stop) pick up the A605 towards Peterborough but at Elton take a left just past the speed camera and follow the B621 to Alwalton and the East Of England Arena.
After all that lot, the burger-in-a-bap at the Carole Nash Festival Of Motorcycling will never taste so sweet.
Book discounted tickets online now from www.mcnfestival.com where there is also a full list of what to see and do at the show.