Belfast Telegraph

Racing star Eddie Irvine in the driving seat for Sport Relief

By Gary Fennelly

Formula One ace Eddie Irvine was among the famous racing names battling it out in a karting endurance marathon to raise cash for Sport Relief.

Ten teams went head to head at the Eddie Irvine Sports Centre in Bangor last Friday in a winner-takes-all Le Mans-style endurance race to help raise money.

The former Jordan, Ferrari and Jaguar Formula One star was part of a motorsports all-stars team — the Racing Legends — that included Colin Turkington, Jeremy McWilliams, Joshua Brookes and Gordon Crockard.

Other teams taking part were Charles Hurst Ferrari, Race School Ireland, Acclaim Driving School, Nutts Corner Raceway and Northern Ireland Media — which included staff from the Belfast Telegraph and the BBC.

Only one team could be crowned as winners and as expected it was the motorsport pros in the Racing Legends who at the end of a three-hour marathon event climbed the podium to accept their trophies.

Conlig native Eddie (46) said that he was delighted with the success of the event and was "immensely proud to be helping with Sport Relief." He added that he hoped the charity event would become an annual fixture.

Eileen Cummings, who organised the event on behalf of Acclaim Driving School, said: "I would like to thank all participants, sponsors, spectators and of course Eddie Irvine for all their support which helped make the event a great success."

Sport Relief aims to transform the lives of poor and vulnerable people across the UK and in the world's poorest countries.

In total, the charity's fundraising efforts throughout the UK raised a record on-the-night total of £50m. The sum was confirmed as £50,447,197, which was a massive £21m more than the amount raised last year.

International Development Secretary Andrew Mitchell confirmed that the Government will match £10m of public donations to Sport Relief.

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