Brother of RTE sports presenter Jacqui Hurley is killed in crash
A BROTHER of RTE sports presenter Jacqui Hurley was killed in a crash in freak weather while making his way home.
Sean Hurley, who was a champion motorcycle racer, was killed in a single-vehicle accident in Cork, linked to torrential rainfall, high winds and poor visibility.
Mr Hurley (25), from Ballinhassig, Co Cork, died when his 4x4 vehicle spun out of control and struck a tree outside Halfway on the Kinsale to Bandon Road shortly before 7pm on Wednesday evening.
The emergency services were quickly on the scene, but Mr Hurley was pronounced dead before he could be transferred to Cork University Hospital.
Mr Hurley's friend, comedian PJ Gallagher, described him as "one of the nicest guys in motorbikes".
Mr Hurley enjoyed an outstanding racing season this year -- and was invited to Valencia in Spain by sponsors Bridgestone to mark his triumph in the Mondello Park Supersport Championship.
Mr Hurley -- who was a plasterer by profession -- had been in negotiations to join a Northern Ireland-based racing squad for the 2012 season.
His friend Declan Swanton said that the accident had left the entire racing community numbed.
Mr Swanton had trained in the gym with Mr Hurley just 24 hours before the freak accident, and he said his friend was in great form and really looking forward to 2012.
A special online tribute was paid to him yesterday by the Cork Motorcycle Racing & Vintage Club.
"The world of motorcycle racing is devastated once more as we learned today of the death of our friend Sean Hurley -- champion, great pilot, a decent and good guy," a club spokesperson posted.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and loved ones at this tough and painful time."
Friends yesterday said that Ms Hurley and her entire family were devastated by the tragedy.
Meanwhile, the other motorist killed on a Cork road on Wednesday has been named as Denis Bennett (64), from Blarney Street in Cork city.
Mr Bennett -- a retired Irish Distillers worker -- died when the car he was driving collided head-on with an oil tanker outside Macroom on the N22 Cork-Killarney Road.
The collision occurred at 2.20pm at Mons-Lissacrassaig outside Macroom and Mr Bennett, who was returning home after attending a funeral in Kerry, was pronounced dead before he could be transferred to hospital.
The driver of the oil tanker was uninjured but was treated at the scene for shock.
Gardai were forced to close the road between Millstreet Cross and Ballyvourney, with major diversions in place.
Macroom gardai have again appealed for witnesses to the collision to contact them at 026 20590 or via the Garda Confidential Line 1800 666111.
Weather conditions and restricted visibility are also suspected to have played a part in the Macroom accident.