Belfast Telegraph

Co Tyrone road racer killed on circuit one year after death of young rider

By John Mulgrew

A Northern Ireland motorcycle road racer and father-of-three has been killed in a crash at the Manx Grand Prix.

His death comes exactly a year after that of a young Portadown rider at the same event.

Trevor Ferguson (48) — uncle of one of Ulster’s top riders, Ryan Farquhar — died during the Supertwins race, crashing off at The Nook on the approach to Governors Dip.

He was riding one of Farquhar's KMR Kawasaki bikes at the time.

The shop owner and seasoned rider from Castlecaulfield in Co Tyrone was married with three children, and was a winner of six Irish national road titles.

His two daughters were part of his pit crew for yesterday’s race.

He first competed in the Manx Grand Prix in 2006 and came sixth in the 2008 Junior race during his time racing on the world famous Isle of Man course.

Stephen Davison, a road racing photographer, said Ryan was devastated by his uncle’s death.

Speaking from the Isle of Man, he said: “I spoke to Ryan and he is very upset.

“Ryan won the first race of the day.

“The whole thing went from triumph to tragedy.

“He was celebrating his victory in the morning — and in the afternoon he was mourning the death of his uncle.

“His whole family were with him here — his wife, three children and his father.

“His father was giving him a pit board on the mountain section of the race.

“Trevor loved racing and he loved the Manx.

“His death is a huge loss to the sport, but it’s a massive and unbearable loss to his family.”

The latest tragedy to hit the motorcycling fraternity comes exactly a year after the death of 20-year-old Wayne Hamilton, who was killed when his Yamaha 600cc left the track on August 29 last year.

Wayne’s father David, who was at the races yesterday, said Trevor’s tragic death had “brought it all back”.

“I was sitting outside the race office at the same time last year,” he added.

“I’m gutted, absolutely gutted. It really brings it all back, it’s terrible.

“I was watching the races at the time and went out of the paddock, then I saw the helicopter taking off, then later on we found out.”

Harvey Garton, chair of the Manx Motor Cycle Club, said the feeling across the event was one of “true sadness”.

“It’s such a tragedy; it was his sixth year at the Manx. The feeling is really terrible and the whole racing community is stunned,” he said. “It’s dreadful, it’s just an absolutely dreadful thing. Tragically, road racing has the most incredible highs and the most dreadful lows. We had victory earlier and to counterbalance we have this.

“It’s terrible.”

Mr Garton said those in the paddock were stunned, but were “one big family” which would rally around to show support.

“Even though we are not related we are all affected by these things,” he said.

“The circuit Trevor was racing on was, like for so many, the pinnacle of racing, and I knew him like I knew many of the riders.”

It’s understood an investigation into the crash is now under way.

Family in poignant pilgrimage to scene of fatal crash

By John Mulgrew

The father of a promising young Co Armagh road racer who died on the Isle of Man has revisited the scene of his death one year on.

The anniversary comes as another rider — Trevor Ferguson — was killed yesterday during the same event which took the young Portadown bike ace’s life 12 months ago.

David Hamilton and his family returned to the island yesterday for a ceremony to mark Wayne’s death.

He was 20 when he was killed during a difficult section of the infamous TT circuit.

A former racer himself, David said it is a day that “will never escape his thoughts”.

He said: “That day we were watching him go through every sector on the computer and then it stopped and he goes missing — that can mean only one thing.

“I was then brought into the race office along with the welfare officer and the doctor, and then you are told.

“I was just devastated. I couldn’t explain it; it’s a mix of emotions and I don’t ever want to go through it again.”

Yesterday he was joined by his partner and Wayne’s siblings.

A year ago the up-and-coming rider was on the crest of a wave, having just won the newcomer fixture at the Manx Grand Prix. But while holding onto third place on his Yamaha 600cc during the third lap of the race he was involved in the horrific crash.

“There are mixed emotions, it has been so hard. Everyone is over with me now, his brothers and sisters, for a small service in Douglas,” added David.

Speaking as this year’s racers sped around the circuit, Manx Motor Cycle Club chairman Harvey Garton said Wayne was “a man with a big future ahead of him”.

“Everyone was so devastated when that horrifying accident happened,” he added.

David said that road racers by their very nature were “selfish” — knowing they were putting their lives on the line every time they took to the track.

“They are so selfish and have no respect for anyone else’s emotions. But, in the same breath, Wayne achieved more than many others would do in a lifetime.”

Belfast Telegraph

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