Wednesday 13 December 2017

Racing must go on, says family of tragic biker

Jason O'Brien

THE brother of a motorcyclist killed during a practice session for a road race was among thousands who attended the races yesterday.

Stephen Larkin (27) died after the accident at the Kells Road Races in Co Meath on Saturday. His was the second death in two years at the meeting.

Aileen Ferguson, secretary of the Kells Motorcycle Racing Club (MCRC), said yesterday that the rider's family had asked for racing to continue.

"His wife Katherine, father Gerry and brother Michael stated that it is what Stephen would have wanted. He loved the racing," she said.

"They are a big motorcycling family, and Michael was there today as well."

Mr Larkin, who was from Armagh, had been out on the Crossakiel circuit practising for the 401-750cc support race when the crash happened.

Gardai said the accident happened at 5.20pm and the rider was taken to Beaumont Hospital in Dublin where he died.

There was a collection for Mr Larkin at the curtailed event yesterday.

"As a club we would like to express sympathies with his family and friends," Johnny Landy, chairman of the Kells MCRC, said.

Last July, Padraig Campbell (32) died, also in a practice session.

His death was the first in the 15-year history of the Crossakiel event.

Mr Larkin became the third person to die while involved in motor sports over the past month.

Motorcyclist Miles Byrne was killed on July 3 during the annual Skerries road race.

The 36-year-old father of two, from Knocklyon, south Dublin, was killed when he accidentally clipped the rear wheel of the driver in front of him.

And during the Topaz Donegal International Rally in late June, co-driver Thomas Maguire from Longwood, Co Meath, lost his life.

Meanwhile, a woman in her 20s was recovering in hospital following a road accident in Co Westmeath yesterday. The single-vehicle crash happened on the N52 around one mile from Delvin.

Irish Independent

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