Barry Sheene Memorial
While the Easter motorcycle meeting at Mount Panorama is long gone more than 10,000 fans are expected at Sydney’s Eastern Creek Raceway this 2008 Easter weekend for the Barry Sheene Memorial meeting.
Easter is a legendary time amongst Australian motorcycle fans with the many great races at Bathurst’s Mount Panorama living long in the memories of two wheel enthusiasts. While the Easter motorcycle meeting at Mount Panorama is long gone more than 10,000 fans are expected at Sydney’s Eastern Creek Raceway this Easter weekend for the Barry Sheene Memorial meeting.
Some of the Great names of racing from the 1970s including Kiwi’s Ginger Molloy and Dave Cole as well as Aussie Robbie Phillis will be amongst the racers taking to the track for a weekend trip down racing’s memory lane. More than 220 Classic, Post Classic and historic racing motorcycles will take part in more than 30 events across three days celebrating past eras of racing.
Just as the Muscle Car Masters is proving a major attraction each September for four-wheel enthusiasts the Barry Sheene Memorial has built a major following over the past three years and organisers expect a big crowd again this year. Organisers the Post Historic Racing Association (PCRA) say the meeting has grown rapidly over the past three years and this year entries are up by ten percent on 2006. PCRA president Russell Fairbairn says the meeting is gaining a reputation as the best historic bike race event on the calendar and is attracting attention around the world as well as here in Australia.
“This is just a great celebration of both great racers and great machinery and provides thrills both on and off the track,” says Russell Fairbairn. “We created this meeting because we wanted to honour the late, great Barry Sheene who raced so passionately through the 1960s and 70s on bikes such as the ones that will be racing on the Easter weekend. While the likes of Ginger Molloy and Robbie Phillis will give fans plenty to cheer about on track there will also be the chance to see many great old bikes and some particularly rare ones in the pits in between races,” he said.
Fairbairn says more and more famous former racers will feature at the Barry Sheene Memorial over the next few years with the likes of Wayne Gardner, Mal Campbell and others keen to take part. “Wayne and Mal wanted to be a part of the meeting this year but prior engagements prevented it but as the reputation grows they will be there in the future,” he added.
While the Bathurst bike races no longer take place over Easter Fairbairn says the Barry Sheene Memorial is more attractive to time poor bike enthusiasts. “People don’t have time to spend the entire Easter weekend at Bathurst these days but can come and spend a day or even a half day catching the great bikes at Eastern Creek and we do have some fabulous machinery. Bikes such as Marcus de Caux’s classic AerMacchi Harley and Bimoto 400 and others such as the rare Cotton Rotax racer will be on track after being restored to their past glory,” he said.
“There are just some terrific machines from pre 1962 Classic machines to New Era 2 bikes which are from the1990 to 1995 era, they are all terrific bikes and fans will be able to get up close and see them first hand in the pits,” said Fairbairn.
While many of the bikes are extremely valuable the guys riding them are not afraid to race and to extract every last ounce of performance from the classic machines. Racing will start from 10 am on Good Friday March 22 with practice and qualifying with racing continuing across Saturday March 23 and Sunday March 24 with entry from just $15.
ABOUT THE RACE MEETING The 2008 Barry Sheene Memorial Race Meeting is on over the 21st, 22nd & 23rd of March 2008 at Eastern Creek Raceway. This race meeting is dedicated to the memory of the late, great Barry Sheene – double world champion, commentator, TV personality, wit, raconteur and all round great bloke! The Barry Sheene Memorial meeting is a weekend of fantastic bike racing open to a huge range of historic, production racing and modified motorcycles manufactured up to 1995.
Spectators are able to access all the pit areas and all spectator points around the Eastern Creek circuit for a memorable weekend of superb classic and contemporary road racing. Race Practice is on Friday the 21st of March (Trackday is open to any motorcycle competition license holder). Racing over the Saturday and Sunday will feature PRE 1950, PRE 1968, Period 4, Period 5, New Era 1, New Era 2, Motolites, Superlites and Sidecar classes.