Thursday 23 May 2019

Superbike siblings do historic double

Dynamic Doneraile duo ride into the annals of road racing history after scooping national titles on same day

Bill Browne

Two brothers from Doneraile have made Irish road racing history by becoming the first siblings to ever hold Irish superbike titles in separate categories in the same year.

Barry and Wayne Sheehan of Sheehan Racing finished off a nail-biting season last Sunday by scooping the Junior Support and Senior Support titles respectively at the East Coast Racing Festival in Killalane Co. Dublin. 

Going into the final day of racing it was all to play for with Barry and his nearest challenger Liam Chawke set to battle it out for the top spot in the final race of the season.

While Chawke led for the majority of the race, a mistake on one of the corners opened the door for Barry who swept past on his Kawasaki, holding onto the lead past the chequered flag. 

Ironically, Wayne was also up against Liam Chawke in his final race and, although he could only finish in second place on his Yamaha, it was enough to secure the title and a famous and unprecedented double for the Doneraile duo. 

Their support team of their father Timmy and mechanic Tony O'Riordan were on hand to join in the celebrations along with their proud mother Margaret. 

Speaking to The Corkman, Margaret said that winning the titles on the same day was an amazing feat.

"The boys are full-time professional racers who devote all of their time to their sport. It takes a lot of hard work, commitment and sheer guts to compete at the top level in this sport and I am incredibly proud of the fact that I can boast of having two Irish champions in the family," she grinned. Margaret said that since the superbike season began back in March the boys have travelled the length and breadth of the island of Ireland competing in tough races, in all types of conditions competing against the country's top riders.  

"Taking on and beating the very  best Irish riders in the sport over the course of a season is an incredible achievement, one that could not have been achieved without Timmy, Tony and the sponsors who helped make it all possible," she said. 

"Doneraile has plenty of talented sports people but it is the Sheehan brother who have brought home two Irish titles to the village in 2018," beamed Margaret.