Life Family

Tuesday 20 March 2018

Meet Ireland's fastest couple and their biggest fan 11-month-old Rory

Top drivers husband and wife Simon and Deirdre McKinley with their 11-month-old son Rory
Top drivers husband and wife Simon and Deirdre McKinley with their 11-month-old son Rory

Paul Healy

Meet the couple that have been dubbed 'Ireland's fastest family'.

Simon McKinley (34) and his wife Deirdre (34) have been bringing their 11-month-old son Rory to motor races ever since he was born.

Motor-racing fanatic Simon is the four-time reigning Irish Hillclimb and Sprint Champion, while Deirdre has been a multiple winner of the fastest lady award for the past number of years.

The record-setting couple from Naul, Co Dublin met 13 years ago at a hill-climb race in Limerick and have taken home trophies together ever since.

Hillclimb and Sprint is a branch of motorsport where drivers compete against the clock in an uphill course, finishing out in a 'sprint' to the finish line.

Simon presented his 'Lant RT4' racing car to a crowd of motor enthusiasts at the Mansion House yesterday.

With over 1.5 million views on YouTube, his driving style has attracted much attention worldwide and he is targeting the championship win again this year.

His wife Deirdre's purple Reynard Opel Lotus was also on show at the event.

Deirdre is one of the highest-ranking motorists in the world after coming third in the International Hillclimb Masters last year.

"Deirdre finished third in the lady's class in the masters, which is a big thing," Simon said. "It took me eight years to try and get her to drive though."

Ms McKinley said she hoped young Rory would follow in his parent's footsteps, once he was old enough to learn about racing.

"He's been to every race," she told the Herald.

The Naylor Engineering Hillclimb Championship starts in Ballyvaughan, Co Clare, on Saturday April 25.


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