The Isle of Man Steam Packet Company has announced that an advance booking scheme for TT marshals, launched last year, will be offered again.

A discount scheme for members of ‘Team Orange,’ which has been running since 2008, will also continue.

In 2015, the Company teamed up with the TT Marshals Association to give advance booking for this year’s TT to dedicated marshals who volunteered during TT2014.

It has now confirmed that those who marshalled at five or more practice sessions or race days during the TT last year will be able to book for TT2017 ahead of the general public.

This advance booking scheme is in addition to the discount scheme, where marshals who attend both the TT and Festival of Motorcycling in one year receive a partial refund of their ferry costs for the Festival of Motorcycling.

Robert Crane, Chairman of the TT Marshals Association, said: ‘The idea behind the advance booking scheme was to benefit those marshals who give up their time each year to help make the TT happen. It was welcomed by marshals when it was introduced last year, and we’re delighted the Steam Packet Company has agreed to continue the scheme We recognise that this is a significant cost to the Steam Packet at such a busy period of the year.

‘In conjunction with the refund scheme, we hope the offer of advance booking will encourage more marshals to attend and help the TTMA recruit new marshals.

‘For each race or practice session we need more than 500 marshals to cover the TT Course and, without them, the events simply could not take place. Anything which encourages people to volunteer is to be welcomed, and these two schemes demonstrate the Steam Packet Company’s longstanding support and commitment to road racing in the Isle of Man.’

All eligible marshals identified by the TTMA will be contacted directly by the Steam Packet Company during April.

Steam Packet Company Sales Development Manager Brian Convery added: ‘We know the critical role marshals play in ensuring the TT and Festival of Motorcycling can go ahead, so we’re pleased to support this vital initiative to boost numbers.

‘The advance booking scheme for marshals worked well last year, and seemed to be appreciated. It made it easier for marshals to book, in addition to reducing the number of callers to our Call Centre, when advance bookings open for the following year’s TT.’

The TTMA works hard each year to ensure there is enough cover for all practice and race sessions. Anyone interested in becoming a marshal should contact [email protected] or call 01624 618191.