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Barry Sheene tribute at Phillip Island round of MotoGP

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  • Barry Sheene tribute at Phillip Island round of MotoGP

    The 2003 Skyy Vodka Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix will celebrate the life and racing career of the legendary Barry Sheene.

    Tributes to Sheene will begin before the GP, starting at Bairnsdale in Victoria’s Gippsland district.

    A ride of remembrance is planned from Bairnsdale to the Phillip Island circuit on Thursday, October 16 – the day before the GP begins.

    A memorabilia auction will be held in Bairnsdale on the night of Wednesday, October 15, as riders start gathering for the following day’s ride.

    The activities will raise funds for CanTeen, the official charity of this year’s Motorcycle GP.

    CanTeen is a national peer support organisation for young people living with cancer.

    Sheene, a two-time 500cc world champion who migrated from Britain to Australia in the late 1980s and became a television commentator, died of cancer in March.

    A special commemorative pin featuring Sheene’s famous number seven will be sold for $5 throughout GP week, again with proceeds going to CanTeen.

    The memorabilia auction will be held as part of a tribute evening at the Bairnsdale RSL and will feature appearances by Daryl Beattie, a former Australian 500cc racer and GP winner who became a Channel 10 commentary colleague of Sheene, and V8 Supercar stars who knew Sheene.

    Riders wanting to travel in the convoy to Phillip Island on the Thursday need to register at the Bairnsdale football oval, where they can enjoy a late barbecue breakfast before the official wave-off at 10.30am.

    The 300km ride will be along the Princes Highway, with a fuel and refreshment stop at Morwell, then continue along the Strzelecki and Bass Highways, via Leongatha and Wonthaggi, to San Remo – the gateway to Phillip Island.

    Once across the San Remo bridge the ride will proceed to the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit for a slow lap of the track.

    Riders are then invited to attend a short tribute function celebrating Sheene’s contribution to GP motorcycle racing.

    People interested in participating in the Ride to the GP – a Tribute to Barry Sheene are encouraged to fill out an expression of interest form which can be found at the Australian Grand Prix Corporation’s official website,

    There are also plans to have Sheene’s two world championship-winning 500cc Suzuki bikes on display at the GP.

    CanTeen’s vision is to bring together young people living with cancer in order to create an Australia-wide peer support network whereby members can share experiences, have fun, offer resources and promote understanding, well-being and leadership.

    Members, who include patients, siblings and those with a parent or primary carer living with cancer, are able to participate in camps, outings, seminars and workshops aimed at supporting, developing and empowering young people living with cancer. Established in 1985, CanTeen was developed fully by a group of young cancer patients supported by key health professionals.