A racer was killed and a spectator injured in a crash which led to the Grand Final of the Skerries 100 road races being abandoned, bringing a blistering day of racing to a tragic end.
Irish road racing regular Myles Byrne died in a crash at the start of the Grand Final on Saturday. It was reported a spectator was also seriously injured in the incident which claimed the life of the popular County Meath rider.
The Grand Final should have been a spectacular end to what had been a fine day of racing at the 65th Skerries meeting just north of Dublin, but the first lap crash led to the race being halted and abandoned, ending the day under a cloud.
Keith Amor, one of the stars of the day, passed on his condolences to family and friends of those involved in the crash.
Amor, back in action after a three-week break since the Isle of Man TT, was in the mix throughout the day, resuming his elbow-to-elbow road racing battle with Ryan Farquhar.
The rivalry which dominated much of the 2009 season on the roads continued first with the Open race, where Falkirk's Amor held off Dungannon's Farquhar until the late stages when he started to struggle with the handling of his KBMG Racing BMW and arm pump. Amor focused on battling for the runners-up spot and managed to hold off Michael Dunlop to claim second behind Farquhar.
Amor then switched to his Kojak Racing Honda for the Supersport 60cc race, which proved the race of the day.
He battled with Farquhar and the Dunlop brothers Michael and William for honours in a gripping race-long showdown.
The lead repeatedly changed hands in the early laps, but Amor fought his way to the front of the four rider group and opened up a slight gap before backmarkers in the closing stages allowed the foursome to close right back up again.
Aided by a new lap record of 107.263mph, Amor crossed the line at the end of the 8 laps 0.349s ahead of Farquhar. He then led the opening lap of the Grand Final before the race was stopped due to a serious accident that claimed the life of Byrne.
“I really enjoyed being back out on the bikes today and it's a real shame that the day ended in the manner it did, so sincere condolences to all concerned.”
“It's great to be back out on a bike again and although it took me a few laps to get dialled back in, by the second race I felt comfortable and enjoyed myself out there.”