The 2016 Barry Sheene Festival of Speed proved another stunning success for racers and the punters alike, with the GP Legends Clash a major draw card... Photography: Kris & David Hodgson
2016 Barry Sheene Festival of Speed – Friday
Words: Kris Hodgson Photography: David Hodgson, Kris Hodgson
Following Thursday’s successful, sunny and clear day of practice, the Barry Sheene Festival of Speed for 2016 set off in full on Friday, with a morning of qualifying, followed by the first race sessions in the afternoon, as well as the highly anticipated GP Legends Clash.
Friday started clear and fine, despite ominous clouds in the distance, with the day to be punctuated by sudden but short-lived downpours, in some cases thinning the field of riders willing to head out, and necessitating the GP Legends Clash be delayed for dryer conditions, later in the afternoon.
Qualifying One featured the P3 500, F700 and 1300cc classes, along with P4 350 and 750cc, and P5 500cc, with Graeme Wilshaw on the BMW R75/5 posting the best time, followed by Glenn Hindle on a Maxtron TR3, then Aaiden Coote on the Rob North Trident, just ahead of Kevin Schwantz riding a McIntosh Norton Manx, with the top five rounded out by Robert Young on board a Ducati TT500.
Qualifying Two saw the P3 250 and 350cc, P4 125 and 250cc, P5 125 and 250cc and P6 125cc machines on track, with Jason Dunn on a Honda RS125 taking the lead position, over three seconds faster than Dan Harrison (Honda RS125), who was similarly faster to Russel Fairbairn in third aboard a Cotton EM34, with Grant Boxhall (Yamaha TZ250S) and Phillip Paton (Bultaco TSS Air Cool) rounding out the top five.
Qualifying Three saw the P5 and P6 750cc machines head out, with John Allen (Yamaha YZR) posting the fastest time, with only two laps on track, while Marty Craggill wasn’t far behind on a Yamaha TZ500. Mark Wilkinson posted the third fastest time on a Kawasaki ZXR750, with fourth and fifth both TZ750s, ridden by Craig Ditchburn and Damian Mackie respectively.
Qualifying Four saw the Period 6 500cc machines fighting it out in a largely Honda dominated field with storm clouds looming and in damp conditions, with four of the top five riders on board Honda VFR or CBR 400 models, led by Harley Borkowski, with Simon Thomas on a Yamaha TZ250U shortly behind, followed by Phillip Burke, Leanne Nelson, and Anthony Carol.
In Qualifying Five the P6 250 GP and 250 Production bikes raced combined with the Pre-Modern F3, with Honda RS250 mounted Jason Dunn taking top honours and pole, followed by Brett Simmonds (Yamaha TZ250A), Simon Hills (Yamaha FZR400), Richard Peers-Jones from the UK on a Yamaha TZ250, while Alan Johnston on a Yamaha TZ250A finished the top five.
Qualifying Six was the P5 and P6 1300cc Unlimited session, with the track now wet with rain continuing, with Chas Hern aboard the T-Rex Racing Harris Honda taking the fastest lap by just six-one-thousandths of a second, from Paul Byrne on a McIntosh Suzuki, while Kevin Schwantz and Jeremy McWilliams had the third and fourth fastest times respectively, aboard XR69s. Adrian DiGiandomenic was fifth on a Yamaha FZR, while Cam Donald was sixth on a XR69.
Qualifying Seven saw the Pre Modern F1 and F2, and Period 3 1300cc Unlimited run, with Paul Grant-Mitchel on a Kawasaki ZX-7RR posting the fastest lap, from Richard Draper on a Kawasaki ZXR, with Aaiden Coote on the Rob North Trident a further four seconds in arrears. Simon Rees (Honda CB750) and Matthew Hanna (Kawasaki ZX6YZ) filled out the top five. By this point the rain had stopped, with the track drying very slowly, in the still mainly overcast conditions.
Qualifying Eight was the Period 4 500cc, Period 5, 350cc and Pre Modern 250cc GP classes, with Cam Donald riding the EGLI Vincent in the wet conditions to the fastest time, followed by Yamaha TZ350 riders, Richard Peers-Jones, Bernie Summers and Glenn Hindle.
The final qualifying session, Qualifying Nine was the Sidecar Australian Championship/Trans-Tasman Challenge qualifying, containing the F1, F2 and Period 3, 4 and 5 machines, with the top five riders being Colin Buckley/R. Shorter (Carl Cox Motorsport LCR/Kawasaki), Jeremy Joyce/C. Blackman (LCR Kawasaki), Darryl Rayner/W. Campbell (Shelbourne Honda), Mick Alton/C. Clancy (LCR Suzuki) and Richard Goodale/S. Goodale.
The first race of the weekend would see a drying but still damp track host the P3 500cc, F700cc and 1300cc; P4 350cc and 750cc and Period 5 500cc, with crowd favourite Kevin Schwantz taking a dominating lead to win by almost four seconds on the Norton Manx, with Graeme Wilshaw taking second on a BMW 75/5, with Aaiden Coote filling out the top three with the Rob North Trident. This wasn’t before an incident during the initial warm up lap caused a lengthy delay and forced the race to be rerun.
This was followed by the P3 250 and 350cc, P4 and P5 125 and 250cc and P6 125cc brackets with the sun peeking out onto a still damp track, with Jason Dunn (Honda RS125) taking a strong win from Dan Harrison (Honda RS125) and Philip Paton (Bultaco TSS Air Cool).
The third ‘race’ was slated to be the GP Legends Clash, but with the rare and exotic machinery facing continuing wet conditions, it was instead delayed till later in the afternoon when better conditions were hoped to present themselves.
The next big event was Race Six, with the P5 & P6 1300cc Fastest 50 event on a finally dry track, with New South Welshman Paul Byrne taking a strong win from Chaz Hern on the T-Rex Racing Harris Honda, who battled it would with Jeremy McWilliams (XR69) to the finish line, while Cam Donald (XR69) and Dean Oughtred (Suzuki GSX-R1100) finished off the top five.
The GP Legends Clash was also slotted in, shortly after Race Six, with a stunning set of laps put down by Kevin Magee (Yamaha YZR), Freddie Spencer (Honda RS500R), Kevin Schwantz (Suzuki RGV500), Jeremy McWilliams (XR14) and Steve Parrish (Suzuki RBG500), who made up the top five places, for a very competitive ‘non-race’ event, with Magee posting a 1:48.50s lap time and thrilling the locals with huge wheelstands!
Spectators were also treated to an amazing spectacle in the pits prior to the race starting with the exotic international machinery being warmed up, among a huge gaggle of star struck fans.
Directly following the GP Legends Clash was the Barry Sheene Top 50 Leg 1, with Kevin Schwantz heading straight back out on track on the XR69. It would be Chas Hern on the T-Rex Bimota YB5 who would take the win from Cam Donald (XR69) however, with Dean Oughtred (Suzuki GSX-R1100) third, and Kevin Schwantz fourth. The timing couldn’t have been better either, with the weather quickly deteriorating as a massive but short lived downpour hit following the race, drenching the track.
The first Sidecar race of the meet, including the F1, F2, Period 3, Period 4 and Period 5 was also raced Friday afternoon in damp conditions, with Colin Buckley/R. Shorter on the LCR/Kawasaki machine taking a dominating win of over 20 seconds, from second place runner Jason James/Brett James on the JBR 1000, with Jeremy Joyce/C. Blackman on the RHR Kawasaki taking out a close third place, all in the F1 category.
2016 Barry Sheene Festival of Speed – Saturday:
Saturday started with the Ken Lucas Senior Challenge, originally scheduled for Friday afternoon, and also featuring two legs of the Australian Sidecar Championship/Trans-Tasman Challenge, a morning GP Legends Clash and a Barry Sheene Top 50 race during the afternoon. The crowds swelled on Saturday as well, no doubt helped by most people being off work, with a massive que at the gate later in the day, while those arriving before 9am were able to get in relatively quickly in comparison, many were seen turning around and driving away as there was only one entrance, which was also selling tickets. Thankfully Saturday’s weather was a marked improvement on Friday, with the day remaining fine and clear, in a win for the many motorcycling stalls set up behind the garages.
In the Ken Lucas Senior Challenge it was Lyell Williamson on the Seely Norton who took the first win of the day, just half a second in front of Ian Lovell on the Norton ES2 500, with the two breaking away from the main field to take a dominating first and second place. In third on a Triumph Trident was Terry Martin from New Zealand, while Bob Rosenthal (Matchless G50) and Bruce Ireland (Yamaha TZ750D) were fourth and fifth. The Ken Lucas Challenge requires that the combined age of the rider and machine be 102 or more, offering some very interesting combinations!
The second Sidecar race of the meet saw a repeat of the first for the top three positions, with Colin Buckley/R. Shorter (Carl Cox Motorsport LCR/Kawasaki) taking the win and setting a new lap record of 1:38.930s, with Jason/Brett James in second (JBR 1000) and Jeremy Joyce/C. Blackman (RHR Kawasaki) a more distant third this time, with Dave Boughen/L. O’Kane (Suzuki LCR) close behind, taking fourth.
The second GP Legends Clash of the weekend, after a competitive first session on Friday which was won by Kevin Magee (DMR Motorsport Yamaha YZR), saw the pace quicken despite the events ‘non-race’ status, with Kevin Schwantz on the Steve Wheatman Team Classic Suzuki winning from Freddie Spencer (Honda RS500R) by just five tenths of a second, with Jeremy McWilliams riding the Suzuki XR14 to third place, just holding off Kevin Magee on the Yamaha YZR.
Steve Parrish brought the DMR Motorsport Suzuki RGB500 in fifth across the line, with Maria Costello riding the Paton 500 in a more reserved manner coming in sixth, and followed by the Kawasaki’s, led by Murray Sayle on the KR350, with Graeme Crosby (Kawasaki KR750) and Kork Ballington (Kawasaki H2R750).
The afternoon’s Barry Sheene Top 50 would see Paul Bryne take the win on the DMR Motorsport MacIntosh Suzuki, with second and third hard fought between Dean Ouhtred (Suzuki GSX-R1100) and Chas Hern on the T-Rex Racing Bimota YB5. Kevin Schwantz came in fourth aboard the Suzuki XR69, while Stephen Kairl (Yamaha FZR100) rounded out the top five.
For the second Sidecar race of the day it was again Colin Buckley/R. Shorter (Carl Cox Motorsport LCR/Kawasaki) that took a dominant win, followed by Dave Boughen/L. O’Kane (Suzuki LCR) and a close third in the form of Jeremy Joyce/C. Blackman (RHR Kawasaki). Fourth and fifth were Mick Alton/Chrissie Clancy (LCR Suzuki) and Darryl Rayner/W. Campbell (Shelbourne Honda) both from the F2 category.
2016 Barry Sheene Festival of Speed – Sunday:
The big day dawned slightly overcast with many spectators heading out to the track early before the big crowds arrived, with the pits still quiet at 8am. Saturday’s queues at the gate were again repeated later in the morning as the Barry Sheene Festival of Speed drew another great crowd for Sunday, with the crisp autumn morning providing the perfect environment for racing.
Bikes were on display in pit lane by the time the rider’s briefing was held, particularly down the GP Legends section, while others continued to be madly worked upon, with the first race of the day being the Period 3 500, F300 and 1300cc, plus Period 4 350 and 500cc, and Period 5 500cc. Glenn Hindle aboard the Maxtron TR3 took the overall win, with Schwantz hot on his heels, for an impressive start to the day, punctuated by a cloud of two-stroke exhaust.
To help keep the day’s schedule on track it was also announced all races except the Barry Sheene Top 50 and Sidecars would be reduced from six to five laps, while another huge draw of the morning was the GP Legends presence in the Pirelli tent where they chatted with attendees and autographed programs, posters and pictures.
The Show & Shine was also run on Sunday with the Spectator Parade Laps slated for the lunch break, but ended up being run at 2pm, allowing many excited motorcycle fans to show off their bikes, with a huge variety of machines on the track from all eras.
With a full day of 22 races planned for Sunday the schedule was tight, including the Australian Championship/Trans-Tasman Challenge Sidecar Legs 4 and 5, a morning and afternoon GP Legends Clash, the Barry Sheene P3 500cc race, Paul Dobbs Challenge, Ken Wootton Challenge, and the Barry Sheene Top 50 races.
Plus between all the sessions there was plenty to see for all the punters, from the various stands, walking around the pits, bikes on display – including at the Show & Shine, plus a great atmosphere and plenty of places to pick up a cup of coffee or a bite to eat.
For the morning weather remained slightly overcast but dry, with the early dark clouds blowing over and leaving light cloud cover, before sunshine broke through around midday.
The first GP Legends Clash of the day saw Kevin Schwantz and Jeremy McWilliams switch bikes, with McWilliams on the Suzuki XR84, which he came across the line first on, after five laps, while Freddie Spencer was hot on his heels in second, followed by Steve Parrish and then Kevin Magee in third and fourth places respectively. Fifth was Graeme Crosby on a Kawasaki KR70, with Murray Sayle sixth on a Kawasaki KR350. Kork Ballington and John Boote were seventh and eighth respectively, with Maria Costello completing four Laps and Chris Vermeulen completing three, while Schwantz was a DNF on the XR14.
The morning Sidecar race, or Leg 4 of the Australian Championship/Trans-Tasman Challenge would see Colin Buckler/R. Shorter once again dominate, with J. Joyce/C. Blackman in second, D. Boughen/L. O’Kane in third, J. Brown/D. Sheldrick fourth and M Alton/C. Clancy fifth – representing the F2 category.
In the first Barry Sheene Top 50 race for the day, it would again be Chas Hern impressing on board the T-Rex Racing Bimota YB5, taking a slight lead over Paul Bryne on the DMR Motorsport MacIntosh Suzuki, while Dean Ouhtred (Suzuki GSX-R1100) completed the top three. Kevin Schwantz took fourth place aboard the XR69, which is particularly impressive when you consider just how many events he was competing in, while John Allen (Yamaha YZR) was fifth, not far behind Schwantz.
The final event before the lunch break and HART Parade Laps was the Period 3 500, F700 & 1300cc, Period 4 350 & 750cc, Period 5 500cc race, incorporating the Barry Sheene (P3 500cc) race and Paul Dobbs Challenge (P4 750cc), with Glenn Hindle (Maxtron TR3) winning the race overall, while Kevin Schwantz took second on the Norton Manx, with Todd Sutherland (Yamaha TZ350), Rob Nelson (Yamaha RD350LC) and Peter O’Neill (Roberts TR Suzuki) finishing off the top five, respectively.
Following the lunch break the Period 4 1300cc, Period 5 750cc and Period 6 750cc race was held, including the Ken Wooten Period 4 Challenge, with Mark Wilkinson (Kawasaki ZXR750) taking a clean win, with Stephen Kairl (Suzuki GSXR) five seconds in arrears, followed by Warne Forrest (T-Rex Racing GSX-R750) and Phillip Burke (Honda CBR400). Tim Podt (Honda VFR400) finished off the top five, after battling it out to the line with Burke.
In order to ensure all the main events where raced, while running behind scheduled, the featured races brought were forward Sunday afternoon, with the Barry Sheene Top 50 and Sidecars both brought forward.
The final GP Legends Clash of the weekend saw Jeremy McWilliams once again on the Suzuki XR84, just hundredths of a second in front of Kevin Magee (Yamaha YZF), with Steve Parrish (Suzuki RGB500), Freddie Spencer and John Boote filling out the top five, with a few seconds between each. Chris Vermeulen (RGB500), Maria Costello (Paton Honda), Graeme Crosby (Kawasaki KR70), Murray Sayle (Kawasaki KR350) and Kork Ballington (Kawasaki H2R750) also all completed the final session of five laps, in this order.
The final Barry Sheene Top 50 was held at 4pm, with Paul Byrne (DMR Motorsport MacIntosh Suzuki) taking the win, with Dean Ouhtred (Suzuki GSX-R1100), a second behind, while Chas Hern on the T-Rex Racing Bimota YB5 took third. Kevin Schwantz (XR69) took fourth, while John Allen completed the top five.
This was followed by the final leg of the Australian Sidecar Championship/Trans-Tasman Challenge (Leg 5), where Buckley and Shorter completed their clean sweep of the weekends races, while Boughen/O’Kane came across the line next, followed by J. James/L. Menzies. Fourth and fifth were M. Alton/C. Clancy and D. Rayner/W. Campbell respectively, representing the F2 class.
2016 Barry Sheene Festival of Speed – Classes Wrap
After a great weekend of racing the final point score winners of the event by class are as follows.
In the Pre 1950’s class it was just Ross Bolding aboard his Harley WL, taking 100 points from five races, with four first place finishes.
In the Period 3 F1300cc, Bob Sayer (Norton) took a clean streak for 100 overall points, with Dan Gleeson (Norton Dominator 750) taking second and Greg Brillus (HRD Vincent) third, with 60 and 65 points respectively.
The Period 3 500cc saw Schwantz take a dominant win, with four wins for 100 points on the Norton Manx, while Bob Rosenthal (Matchless G50) took two seconds and two thirds to reach 76 points. Keith Wood (Norton Manx) was third overall posting consistent results to reach 66 points.
In the Period 3 250cc class John Imrie (Bultaco Mercurio) was the only entrant, while in Period 3 350cc Philip Paton almost managed a clean sweep, with second place holder Bruce Marston (BSA Goldstar) taking a win in the final race. James MacIntosh (Norton Manx) was third in all five races to take an overall third.
For Period 4, in the 125cc class Dave Miller (Honda CB125) won as the only entrant, while the 250cc class saw John Simms (Yamaha TD3) overall winner, followed by Tim Brittliffe (Yamaha TD3) and Peter Wade (Suzuki T250) respectively.
Period 4 500cc would see Peter O’Neill (Robert TR Suzuki) take the overall win, with Maria Costello on the Paton second, just one point ahead of third place holder David Woolsey (Seeley G50).
In the Period 4 750cc it would again be Peter O’Neill taking the overall win, with a third and three firsts, while Ivan Hoey (Yamaha XS650) and David Grlec (Suzuki GT750) were second and third respectively.
Period 4 Sidecars would also see M.Hollingshed/A.Hewess (Tanzac) take the overall win from T.Love/D.Brennan (BMW R65) and G.Grant/D.Hagney (Kawasaki H2).
Period 5 would see the 125cc category won by John Simms (Yamaha TD3), with Tim Brittliffe second, and Peter Wade (Suzuki T250) third. In the 250cc class Russel Fairbairn (Cotton EM34) came out on top, narrowly missing a clean sweep, with Grant Boxhall (Yamaha TZ250S) a consistent second place, and Lindsay Russel (Yamaha RD250LC) taking third in every race.
Glenn Hindle (Yamaha TZ350) took the overall Period 5 350cc win, with four first places out of five races, with Rob Nelson (Yamaha RD350LC) and Phil Oades (Yamaha LC350) completing the top three.
Peter O’Neill (Robert TR Suzuki) would take out the Period 5 500cc class, with three wins and a second place, while Rob Nelson (Yamaha RD350LC) and Lindsay Russel (Honda CB400F) were second and third, with just three points separating them, with Mitchell Mulligan (Ducati Pantah) in fourth just a single point behind Russel.
The Period 5 750cc class would be dominated by Craig Ditchburn (Yamaha TZ750), with Mitchell Mulligan (Ducati TT2) and Danny Carter (Suzuki TR750) second and third respectively.
In Period 5 Sidecars, D.Chivas/E.Scholtz (Peter Built) took a strong win, with E.Poucher/B.Poucher (Windle Suzuki 1100S) second, and B.Horner/C.Dinuzzo third on the Irving Vincent machine.
In the Period 6 classes, the 125cc category was won by Jason Dunn with a clean sweep, with Jack Robinson second and Ken Linsday third, with the top three riders mounted on Honda RS125s.
The Period 6 750cc class saw Mark Wilkinson (Kawasaki ZXR750) take a clean sweep, with Wayne Forrest (Suzuki GSX-R750) just a point ahead of Harley Borkowski (Honda VFR400) in second and third respectively.
In the Pre Modern 250cc GP category Vincent Bell took the overall win, with a second and three firsts, while Richard Easton took a first place for second, with 25 points.
In the Pre Modern F2 Graham Percy (Yamaha FZR) took the overall win from Matthew Hanna (Kawasaki ZX6YZ) in second and Phillip Bartush (Ducati) in third. In the Pre Modern F1 it would be Paul Grant-Mitchell who took the win, with two wins and three second places, while Michael Cook took second overall, with Adrian DiGiandomenic finishing off the top three.
In the Modern F1 Sidecar categories it was C. Buckley/R. Shorter who took the overall win with three wins, while J. Joyce/C. Blackman in second, was just a point ahead of D. Boughen/L. O’Kane.
In the Modern F2 Sidecars it was M. Alton/C. Clancy taking a clean sweep, from D. Rayner/W. Campbell with all seconds, and J. Clancy/N. Beare with all thirds.
The lone entrant in the Clubman Sidecars was R. Simpson/M. Dingli, taking the win.
In the featured events the Barry Sheene Top 50 was won by a narrow margin of just one point by Chaz Hern on the T-Rex Racing Bimota YB5, while Paul Bryne came second in the MacIntosh Suzuki. Dean Ouhtred took his Suzuki GSXR1100 to third overall, with Kevin Schwantz fourth aboard the Suzuki XR69, running fourth in each race.
While not technically a race, in the GP Legends Clash it was Jeremy McWilliams who racked up the most points, although this included swapping bikes with Kevin Schwantz to ride the Suzuki XR84 in later races, while Kevin Magee aboard the Yamaha YZR had the most points on a single machine. Freddie Spencer was next with three second places and a fourth, followed by Steve Parrish, Graeme Crosby, Murray Sayle, Kork Ballington, Maria Costello, Kevin Schwantz, Chris Vermeulen, John Boote and Geoffrey McNaughton, although in some racers some of the GP Legends did come in early.
The GP Legends Clash sessions proved crackers however, with the Kevin Magee setting the fastest lap on Friday, only for the pace to increase on Saturday, led by Kevin Schwantz, with plenty of competitive spirit evident over the weekend.
2016 Barry Sheene Festival Of Speed Results, by class: