Belfast biking world champ Ralf Bryans dies at 72
Belfast-born Ralf Bryans, the 1965 50cc world motorcycle champion, has died at his home in Scotland after a short illness. He was 72.
The former factory Honda racer started racing aged 16 on a BSA Bantam while serving as an apprentice fitter at Chambers Motors in Belfast. He won the Irish 200cc Championship in 1960 and made his Isle of Man TT and Ulster Grand Prix debuts in 1962.
His first GP victory came at the Dutch TT in 1964 in the 50cc class. Bryans won the 50cc world title the following year.
Hector Neill, owner of Superbike team Tyco Suzuki, said he was shocked at the news. They met at Chambers and had been friends ever since. He said: "I will really miss Ralf as he was my golf buddy for years."