Maria Costello MBE makes history again taking a dramatic third place in the 350cc Motorsports Merchandise race at Manx Grand Prix

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Name: Maria Costello
Nickname: Elvis
Age: 31
DOB: 9/06/77
Star Sign: Gemini
Hair Colour: Blonde
Eye Colour: Green
Height: 5'5"
Weight: 55kg
Marital Status: Single
Place of Origin: Spratton, Northampton
Occupation: Motorcycle Racer – Journalist/TV presenter – Stunt/Rider Double - After Dinner Speaker. Used to be a Veterinary Nurse and a CBT instructor.
Hobbies: Cycling and mountain biking, training, going to Hope&Social gigs, horse riding and swimming.
Favourite Food: Lobster.
Favourite Drink: Water.
Alcoholic Drink: Champagne.
Favourite Film: Ferris Buellers Day Off.
Favourite Music: Goldfrapp, Green day, The Eagles, Hope&Social, AIR, Foo Fighters, Jose Gonzalez in fact almost anything.
Favourite Car: Aston Martin, Porsche.
Favourite Bike: Ducati 1098S
Race Bike: Triumph Daytona 675 and Honda RVF400.
Worst Crash: 1999, Proddie 1000 TT (Bray Hill) and 2000, British Superstock, Silverstone.
Racing Hero: Steve Hislop & David Jefferies.
Ambition in Life: To stay happy.
2004 Ambition: Fastest Woman ever at TT - did it!
2008 Aims: Win the Manx, podium at the NW200, race at a 24hr race and at Macau.

Guinness World Record holder Maria Costello is the fastest woman to lap the Isle of Man TT course [2004 Production TT Race – Padgett’s Suzuki GSXR750 K2]. Maria also went on to finish third in the Ultra Lightweight Race at the 2005 Manx Grand Prix. This placed her in the history books as the first woman solo racer to ever stand on the podium at a race around the TT course [RLR Motorsports Honda RVF400].

Maria is a determined, self driven individual who found motorcycling racing by accident almost 11 years ago. Since then she has dedicated herself to the sport becoming a skilful and successful athlete.

Her illustrious career has taken her across Europe racing in some of the Worlds most prestigious events including European Superstock races, supporting World Superbike meetings in Italy and Germany, the British Superstock Championship, the Honda CB500 Cup Championship and much more. Her passion for ‘Real Road Racing’ grew after being introduced to the Isle of Man by the former fastest woman to lap the TT course Sandra Barnett when she became part of an all female racing team.

Maria’s success on track has been mirrored off it, when she won the Northamptonshire Sports Personality of the Year Award in 2005 beating the counties regular sports greats from football, rugby and cricket. This honour also lead to her being nominated for the BBC East Midlands Sports Personality of the Year where she went up against the likes of Dame Ellen McArthur.

In addition, Maria is an athlete and in her role as a Sporting Champion she visit schools and communities with her race bikes inspiring and motivating people to participate in sport and promote a healthy lifestyle. She is also a patron for the Women's Sports Foundation and has written and appeared in their magazine Women in Sport and been a speaker at their conferences.

Her confidence with the media has enabled her to carve out a striking and unique image which has lead to her being the focus of many TV programmes. She has also been a presenter and panellist on TV and more recently stunt doubled for Reese Witherspoon in a multimillion pound movie called ‘Penelope’.

Her passion of two wheels is evident in her written work making Maria an exciting contributor to the motorcycle press. She is a published author in the Used Bike Guide and has written for the UK's No1 motorcycle publication MCN, as well as for Irish Racer, Motorcycle Racer and appears on road tests for MCN and Ride Magazine.

Maria supports many charities both in and outside of the world of motorcycling. Participating in many events to raise awareness of each charity and is a proud patron for Riders for Health and MENCAP, for which she was the lead figure in the promotion of the National Rally 2006.

Maria’s natural talent as an athlete coupled with an unwavering desire for success underlines her ambition to challenge for titles at the top of her sport.


Mechical Failure takes Podium from Maria Costello

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Maria Costello – Queen of Bikers by Maria Costello and Steve Pitts Published by Pennant Books, May 2010

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Two of Northamptonshire’s most noted sports personalities are joining forces to form an exciting new motorcycle race team for 2009 – Costello Redmond Racing. Motorcycle racer Maria Costello and former 400m World and European Champion runner Derek Redmond will head up a team of ten riders to compete in the Hottrax Endurance Championship.


Maria Costello MBE makes history again taking a dramatic third place in the 350cc Motorsports Merchandise race at Manx Grand Prix

Maria Costello MBE, made history by becoming the first woman to achieve two podium finishes on the mountain course by taking third place, with a dramatic push to the finish, in Monday’s Motorsport Merchandise 250cc race.

Racing a Bob Jackson Suzuki T20 two-stroke for the first time around the TT course, Maria set off from number 64 on the road and despite encountering traffic as early as on as Quarterbridge she was lying in fourth place, only 3 seconds back on third place.

Bob Jackson’s strategy to pit for fuel on lap three saw Maria move in to first place with a lead of almost 9 seconds from Barry Davidson with Peter Wakefield a further 4 seconds back in third.

Costello added: ‘Getting a board at Sulby Bridge with P1 on it put a massive smile on my face. I knew it would change once the others came out of their pit-stops. But it was a great strategy by Bob Jackson, especially with such wet and misty conditions the race could easily have been stopped early. ‘

With Costello coming into the pits to refuel at the end of lap 3, Barry Davidson moved back into the lead with a 21 second ahead of Peter Wakefield in second. The Bob Jackson team did a great pit-stop and Maria was pushed off by Graeme Crosby – Daytona 200, Imola 200, Suzuka 8 Hours, and Isle of Man TT winner, and rejoined the race in third place.

The chequered flag was out and Barry Davidson took the honours with a race time of 1:42.30.89 from Peter Wakefield (1:43.08.50) in second but there was drama unfolding for the final podium position.

Costello, who was the first woman solo competitor to achieve a podium on the mountain course in 2006, having closed the gap to 7 seconds in third place by the Bungalow, was reported to be stopping at Governors Dip.

The battery on the T20 had failed and the bike had stopped. Maria, without knowing that she had almost six minutes on the next rider in fourth place, paddled the bike out of the dip and then, with the chequered flag in view, pushed the bike to the finish line to take third place in a time of 1:47.31.88.

‘I thought third place was lost but I was determined to get a finish for Bob Jackson & the team and I was sure that you could push in, so I set off towards the finish line. Bob, Allan & Brenda have worked so hard to get the bike ready for the Manx so I wanted to repay them. I consider myself physically fit but I was looking down at my legs and willing them to keep going, I was running on empty. Huge thanks to Bob Jackson for putting together a fantastic little machine, other than the battery failure she pulled like a train, had a silky smooth gear-box and never put a foot wrong. Allan for giving me more than enough fuel to finish, Brenda for all the support, Paul for help in the pit-stop, Granty for suspension set-up & Crosby for the push out the pits – we made history.’

An exhausted yet delighted Costello could hardly believe that after pushing the T20 a distance of almost 500 metres, she had still finished in third place and would be on the podium at a Manx Grand Prix for the second time in her racing career.

Maria will be competing again on Friday aboard the Steve Wheatman Team Classic Suzuki XR69 in the Manx Grand Prix Classic Superbike race.

For further editorial information or a full set of results go to

Mechical Failure takes Podium from Maria Costello

The Northampton racer followed up her recent record-busting performance at the Ulster Grand Prix to finish within a whisker of third place in the Manx Grand Prix Senior Post Classic race on the Isle of Man on Monday.

The former Isle of Man TT female lap record holder was riding superbly in third place and was set for another podium finish when the steering damper of her Suzuki XR69 snapped off forcing her to reduce her speed.

However, despite the damper failure Costello was thrilled to have ridden so well in a race won by Michael Dunlop in a record time of one hour 18 minutes 6.23 seconds. Costello had entered the last lap behind Dunlop and runner-up Michael Buckley dreaming of her second Isle of Man podium following her 2005 third place in the ultra lightweight category. But the snapped steering damper meant her final lap time of 22mins 46.13 seconds was not enough to prevent Geoff Martin and Chris McGahan overtaking her.

“I’d not even considered a place on the podium, so when I saw the boards around the course with ‘3’ on them it was like, ‘me, third?’,” said Costello, who will be signing copies of her autobiography, Queen Of Bikers, at the Northampton branch of Waterstones later this month.

“Of course it was disappointing to lose out on the podium because of a problem beyond my control, but I’m still over the moon that I managed to get the big old Suzuki back across the finish line without a steering damper.

“The Suzuki has been a real challenge to ride but I’ve had an amazing Manx Grand Prix and I’m looking forward to returning next year on another Post Classic machine. I can’t thank the ‘dream team’ of Steve Wheatman [owner of the Suzuki XR69], Jon Sims [who built it], Mick Grant [TT legend and my mentor] and Paul Boulton [top spanner man] enough. This Manx Grand Prix has been one of the best experiences of my life.”



ISLE OF MAN MANX GRAND PRIX Still recovering from the worst injuries of her career Maria still wanted to return to the MGP to compete in both the Junior onboard her BERING Honda CBR600RR and in the Ultra Lightweight on her BERING RVF400. Overcoming her crash demons in the process. Maria remains the fastest woman to lap the Isle of Man TT course.

COCK ‘O’ THE NORTH ROAD RACES – OLIVER’S MOUNT Maria had mixed fortunes during her debut at Scarborough’s Oliver’s Mount. As a mechanical failure forced her to retire whilst in a commendable 7th place on her BERING Honda RVF400.


WORLD ENDURANCE TEST – LE MANS, FRANCE Maria tested for a place in the SUD Endurance 84 team on one of their Suzuki GSXR1000’s beside team owner Luigi and top French female racer Fabienne Migout (the flying piglet).

NORTH WEST 200 Injury forced Maria to sit out this year’s Irish event although she was still invited to attend by Ulster TV and presented a live link after Thursday night’s practice session as well as doing other PR events for the organisers.

EMRA 1300 Open Races 5th on her BERING CBR600RR in the 1300 open class. Not bad considering it was Maria’s first time out after having a bone graft and metal plate fitted to repair her broken collar bone.

Derby Phoenix 2 Day Meeting Snetterton Best finish of 9th place in the fiercely contested 600SS class.

SOUTHERN 100 Road Races, Billown Circuit IoM Maria competed against TT legends such as Robert Dunlop and Chris Palmer at her S100 debut. And had a successful meeting at the very demanding Billown road circuit finishing as the 7th 400 to cross the line and placed 15th overall in the combined 125/400 race.

ISLE OF MAN MANX GRAND PRIX Maria suffered the worst injuries of her racing career when she came off at Kepple Gate on oil left by a previous crash just moments earlier. This resulted in an operation and a two week stay in the IoM Nobles Hospital. Maria will continue to race in 2007 despite this unforeseen set back.


Maria made history by becoming the first female solo racer to stand on the podium at the Isle of Man Manx Grand Prix

Isle of Man Manx Grand Prix Maria made history books once again at the Isle of Man when she took third place in the Ultra Lightweight category of the 2005 Manx GP. On board an RLR Motorsports Honda RVF400, provided by Tim Bradley, Maria became the first ever woman in history to take a podium finish in either a TT or Manx GP.

NORTH WEST 200 In her debut appearance at the Irish Road Race Maria was the third 400 to cross the finishing line onboard the RLR Motorsports Honda RVF400. Placing her, in the joint 125cc/400cc race, 7th overall. She also raced in both 600cc classes on her Bering Honda CBR600RR.


Maria became the outright fastest woman to lap the TT course and collected a Guinnes World Record in the process.

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