Motorcycle racers end very good season on a high note
Gorey motorcycle racer Graham Whitmore did it again by winning the double (Mondello Masters Superbike and the Southern championship) motorcycle racing titles for the second year running.
Graham raced a very impressive season both in Mondello and up north at the Bishopscourt racetrack. Winning the Lightweight Supersport championship with 216 points, with his nearest rival on 156, meant he won the Mondello Masters very comfortably.
However, the last day's racing could have ended terribly as Graham woke up to a very sick stomach which could have ruined the action for him. He soldiered on though and made sure to secure the championship.
Things are looking up for Graham as he heads into the 2017 season, with his eyes set on making it a hat-trick. He has plenty of support from his mother Mary, girlfriend Nicole, and dad Robert who is the master mechanic, keeping his bike running smoothly for each race. He is well backed too by the rest of his family who religiously go to each race, and also his sponsors: J&V Tyres, Power's of Gorey, Toss Byrne's of inch and James Doyle.
Wexford racer Kevin Dempsey also did well, coming second in the Mondello Masters Superbike championship with 190 points in the Principal Insurance Pre-Injection class. All the way through it was a very tightly-fought championship with a recent crash wrecking Kevin's bike.
This could have meant the end but with his chief mechanic, Dermot Richards, pulling out all the stops to have him ready for the next round he was entered in, this helped in securing his second place overall.
Kevin will be moving up to a different machine and class for the 2017 season and hopes this will be his year, but it is a long road ahead which will have many hard races to compete in. Kevin is sponsored by Tom Devereux Quarries.
Another young man making waves, this time in the Irish road racing series, is Wexford's Graham Kennedy who had a great year on some of the toughest road racing tracks in Ireland.
These include the Faugheen 50, Skerries, and Ulster G.P., with a win in the Dundrod national race and then being out alongside the likes of T.T. racers Bruce Anstey and Michael Dunlop. Graham will be a name to watch for the 2017 season as we are sure he will do well.
As his chief mechanic too, Dermot Richards can always be found in the paddock worrying about the young men he works with.
Finally, another Wexford motorcycle racer regularly seen at the Mondello Masters races is local quarry owner Tom Devereux with his stand-out all-green machine. He does well amongst very tough and fast racers in a highly-competitive class.
Tom keeps up with the other riders in the Supersport class and is always bubbly. No matter how the day is going, Tom makes time to talk to spectators who mingle in around the paddock.
Very little is known about these men outside of the racing circles, and hopefully this will make people aware of these motorcycle heroes of Wexford. Maybe, just maybe, they will gain some more support from their localities as a result.