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Last Updated:  Monday, 10 March, 2003, 07:00 GMT
Pay tribute to Barry Sheene
Barry Sheene
Sheene is a sporting legend
Barry Sheene has died at the age of 52 after a six-month battle against throat and stomach cancer.

The Briton won the 500cc World Motorcycle Championships twice in the 1970s and became famous for overcoming his numerous crashes on the track.

At one stage, he had metal plates in both knees, 28 screws in his legs and a bolt in his left wrist.

Thank you for the many hundreds of emails you sent in. A selection appears below.


I remember seeing Barry Sheene race as a young boy. He had something that modern racers do not have, a heroic quality to fight to the flag rather than settle for a points.
Nick Lowe, England

There should be an annual bike rally to celabrate the life of the greatest motorcycle legend that ever lived, Barry Sheene.
Brian, UK

Over the years I have had the privilege to meet and talk to Bazza and he ALWAYS had time for a chat. The last time we spoke was at Scarborough just last year, and even though he was suffering he was still joking along with everyone. A true legend.
Alan Hopps, England

Friday 12th April 1974

I was 19 when I first met Barry Sheene in the paddock at Brands Hatch. I'd gone up to watch the Transatlantic Trophy - a series of match races between Britain and America.

At nine in the morning I was wandering around the paddock admiring all the bikes... John Player Norton's, Kawasaki's, Triumph's etc, but the real attraction was the debuts of the new Suzuki's & Yamaha's in the hands of Barry Sheene and Kenny Roberts.

So there I was in the paddock when I'm flattened by some idiot running into me on a monkey bike! He gets off the bike and helps me back up and it's Barry apologising profusely and trying to dust me down. He took me back to his caravan, made me a cup of tea, offered me a Gauloise - uuuuuugh, signed my programme and gave me a pair of his race gloves!

Subsequently I met him a number of times over the years, at various tracks and even had the pleasure of being driven round Snetterton by him in the Toyota Supra that he raced in the British Touring Car Championship after he packed in bikes. He always remained the same happy cheerful bloke despite his success. A true superstar who will be sorely missed. God Bless You Barry.
Peter Morton, Great Britain

We're thinking of you & your family! Love from The Bells XXXX
Gerry Bell, U.K.

A very sad loss to the world of sport. Barry was my hero as a kid and my inspiration to a 24-year love affair with motorcycling. He was the highlight of my visits to Windmill Garage Kawasaki in the early 80s.
Derek Dente, U.K.

He was a great inspiration to me on how to live life to the full
Ray Thomas, Australia

I watched Barry for many years he was the man who made motorcycling what it is today. He had such an aura about him that people could still feel it in is presence today. The man is a legend and his name will live on for years to come. Goodbye Barry, rest in peace, you will live on in our thoughts forever.
Mark Jones, Lincoln England

Sorry to see such a great person go in such a sad way after all he has gone through and all that he did for the sport that he so enjoyed.
Robin Steward, Canada

I met Barry at the motorcycle show in London in 1975 and watched him race several times afterwards. He was a great inspiration to me on how to live life to the full. I along with many others will deeply miss this genuine person and offer my heartfelt condolences to his family.
Ray Thomas, Australia

I saw Barry Sheene race in the 70's and 80's at Spa Francorchamps, Assen, Nurburgring and the Isle of Man. We all admired the way he drove. One of my friends stills wears his number 7 at the volleyball team as a tribute. It's sad that he isn't here anymore. We will never forget his races.
Peter Brants, Belgium

Still the greatest rider the world has ever seen. He did more for the sport that he loved than anyone who has ever rode motorcycles.
Mr Derek Wright, England

Baz, a legend. A big loss to motorsport in Australia and the world. Deepest sympathy to the family.
Stephen Clarke, Australia

Truly one of the greatest bike riders to hit the tracks, in more ways than one, in person at Cowes, Phillip Island you made me laugh as much as you do on TV, worth ya weight Bazza...rip
Joe, Australia

You made us laugh, you made us cry. We'll miss you dearly. God bless, goodbye
Pete and Jo, UK

Barry Sheene was my hero. I met him lots of times and watched him race. He is the best motorbike racer and always will be. I'm just glad he isn't suffering anymore. He will be a legend forever and will never be forgotten.
Sam Friar, UK

I remember being with my Dad at the British GP in '78. A Rolls pulls up to the paddock gates and Barry leans out the window and hands us two paddock passes... shock and sadness. He was a sporting hero.
Mark Brooke, USA (formally U.K.)

A sad loss to motorsport. Barry was a gentleman who never forgot his fans and was a true ambassador for the sport.
Jim, England

A great loss to motorcycling and the human race. Barry in recent years became an enthusiastic classic bike racer applying all of his skills and enthusiasm to it and really boosting the events he attended. Along with Joey Dunlop, a huge loss to British/world motorcycling
Martin Adams, Dubai

Barry, You made us laugh You made us cry We'll miss you dearly God bless, goodbye

All our love to your family

PJ
Pete and Jo, UK

I was a teenager when Barry and Kenny battled it out on the track for so many exciting races. Thanks for all the great memories Barry. When I get to the 'other side', let's go for a ride!
Terry Hunt, USA

Barry Sheene was an inspiration to all motorcycle racers. He had all the talent in the world and was capable of mixing it with the world's finest. He never conformed to the accepted behaviour that comes with being a top motorcyclist.

Whilst Kenny Roberts would sit quietly contemplating the forthcoming race, Barry would be in his motor home enjoying himself in a way that is frowned upon by the managers of professional sportsmen just before an important event. The world was all the richer with Barry Sheene; it will be all the poorer without him. R.I.P.
Stewart Wall, United Kingdom

A very sad time for everyone who knew Barry. I had the pleasure of meeting him several times over his career and will always remember that happy smile that he had, and the time he gave to anyone who spoke to him or asked for an autograph. A brilliant bloke, never to be forgotten
Richard Faggetter, England.

An extraordinary man amongst extraordinary men
Nigel Carter, England

Going up over Dingle Dell, looking back at Kenny Roberts with two fingers raised behind his back and looking over his shoulder will always be a long lasting memory of a man and his bike as one. A bloody good bloke who has left us all too quickly.
Paul Garbutt, England

I am finding it very hard to come to terms with the death of my hero for the last 26 years. I just hope that wherever you are Barry, the sun is on your face, the wind is in your hair and the road is moving at an excessive speed under your wheels. Luv Ya Forever
Jayne, England

I have so many great memories of Barry - through the 70's to the early 80's I saw him race many times. He was the man. I saw him win the classic race at Donington in 2002 - he was still the man. He's gone now and I shall miss him - what a sad loss. My thoughts are with Steph and their children. Sleep well Bazza - no more pain now.
Richard Hodgkinson, England

We have lost the greatest ambassador to motorcycle racing in living memory. He had an abundance of charisma and skill that thrilled race fans for over a decade. Thank you Barry.
Bruce Moxon, UK

If only some of our current footballers and cricketers had a fraction of the guts and will to win that Barry had then maybe we'd be have teams to be proud of. RIP Barry.
David Croft, Holland

Barry Sheene; an extraordinary man amongst extraordinary men
Nigel Carter, England

Barry Sheene - a true peoples hero, God bless you Barry
Richard, Dublin, Ireland

Back in the seventies, working for our family construction business, we dug a lake and landscaped Barry's place at Charlwood in Surrey. You would not have thought he was a superstar; he was always one of the lads. It takes a special sort of person to remain 'natural'. Our thoughts must also be with his family, who's loss is even greater. God bless you mate.
Ray Welton, UK

Racing will not be the same without you. Barry, thanks for being a super hero - you will not be forgotten. His legend will live on forever. To Barry's family - thinking of you at this sad time.
Robert Duckmanton, United Kingdom

Barry has always been a hero to me, someone to look up to and admire! I am devastated at the loss of this true people's British hero. There will never be another Barry Sheene. You will live forever in the hearts of your fans.
Chris Southern, England

The man is a legend and will be sorely missed by racers and fans alike
Dale C, England

The sad news of Barry's death, though not unexpected, has reminded me what a big part in my life he has played. My closest friends and I are all around Barry's age and we followed his career right from the start. Wonderful memories of a fantastic sportsman.
Derek Rigby, United Kingdom

I first saw Barry race when I was three years old at Olivers Mount. He was a hero from that moment on. I watched a real racer dominate like no other on that ultimate of racer's tracks (the Mount). I watched him through the years at various tracks, but he always came back to Scarborough, where are the stars of today at that meeting? Barry you were a credit to the nation, one of its treasures, my sympathy to Steph and the kids, I will always remember you.
Paul Alsop, United Kingdom

I watched him race many times. He was a very flamboyant person, and made a great impression on the youngsters of his period. He will certainly be missed by all.
Steve Phillips, England.

I'm totally gutted. I knew Barry was ill but he never let on how badly. The man is a legend and will be sorely missed by racers and fans alike. But what an amazing life. So much jammed into, tragically, such a short life. Ride in peace.
Dale C, England.

I was saddened to learn of Barry's death - he was a childhood hero and represented everything that was great about an English sporting hero. A flamboyant personality with a personal touch, most that had never even met him felt that they knew him as a friend. He will be greatly missed. Rest in peace Barry.
Simon Pallant, Hong Kong

Barry, thanks for your everlasting contribution to everyone in and out of motorsport. Your strength and courage will be remembered forever.
Robert C, Australia

I watched your racing career and was impressed, I watched our television career and was even more impressed. You thrilled and entertained on and off the track and your personality gave a brilliant new dimension to the television viewer.

We have missed your presence on the television since becoming ill and all will miss forever the contribution that Barry Sheene has made to their lives.

In every way Barry Sheene was known, he will be remembered as one of the best in his field.
Brian Rignall, Australia

So sorry to see you pass Barry, but you gave us so much excitement during the '70s. We went all over Europe to follow you. '76 was the best year, you won, so did Jock Taylor. You were a true inspiration, have got so many good memories, wouldd love to share them. RIP Bazza, and condolences to your family.
Dena, England

When Barry announced he was going to beat cancer by neglecting chemotherapy, I genuinely thought he was going to do it, as I totally believe he was right to do that. Unfortunately it was not to be, and we are all left with a sad loss.

I cannot classify myself as a motorcycle fanatic but during the late seventies always tuned in to Barry's races. The moment it was announced he had died I automatically thought of his classic race with Kenny Roberts in 1979. A brave and great man.
Roy Chatterton, England

His flame burned very brightly
Ian Parish, UK

I called at my brother's on the way to the Sheffield United v Leeds FA Cup quarter-final on Sunday. He showed me the latest bike mag and we talked about how Barry wasn't up to writing his column, we reminisced a little.

I was driving to work the next day and heard of his death - really upsetting. We're both in our forties and saw him many times, particularly the Transatlantic Trophy series, he was our hero - a great guy.

When I spoke with my brother yesterday he said, "I suppose I'll get out 'The Story so Far.' He did. For me, I find that every now and again my thoughts turn to remembering Barry. A real shame, he will be sadly missed.
Mike H, UK

We will miss him. Our thoughts are with his family.
Murray Parnell, Australia

Condolences to Steph and the kids, our thoughts are with you. His flame burned very brightly.
Ian Parish, UK

My late father took me to my first GP in the early '70s, and guess who was my hero from that day on? The moment I got my 50 I donned a Briut 33 jacket and put on my lid with the duck and the number seven proudly in place.

In my books he was the man who put motorcycle racing permanently on the map. He has been and always will be a big part of my life, a great man, who will be sadly missed. My deepest sympathy goes out to his family and friends. He will never be forgotten.
Adrian Price, UK/Sweden

Heartfelt condolences to all his family
Darren Woodhead, UK

Barry Sheene has remained a hero to me since I first saw him race in 1974. I was close to tears when I heard the news. The man made bike racing, for millions the world over, the best sport around - for bikers and non-bikers alike.

I have lost my hero, his family and friends have lost a lot more. I hope the FIM never issue the number seven again in GPs. His legend will live on in bike racing forever. Goodbye Sheeney.
Barry Bagwell, England

The first poster I had on my bedroom wall was of Bazza on his number seven Suzuki in the mid-'70s. A legend that will be missed! Heartfelt condolences to all his family.
Darren Woodhead, UK

Barry is irreplaceable. Such a man with a real zest for life, a true jewel, Thoughts and prayers to his family, friends and fans, such a loss for us all.
Scott Autrey, USA

Our hero, never to be forgotten.
Kevin Viney, United Kingdom

We followed you through the '70s and watched your wins many times. It is with deep regret we now write on this page. Your wicked smile will always be remembered. Sincere condolences to Stephanie and the children.
The Williams family, Wales

A truly great man has left us. We will never see his like again
Peter Stokes, UK

He was an example to us all of how, with determination and guts, you could become the best. I shall miss him, but his memory will last throughout my life time. God bless you Barry.
Paul Raper, Switzerland

Barry Sheene was my boyhood hero. I used to love watching him race and it was his 'never give up' attitude and the fact that he was an all-round good guy that endeared him to me and lots of others round the world. I'm totally gutted.
Glenn Buckland, England

A truly great man has left us. We will never see his like again. Heaven has just become a much better place for his arrival and the world is left to live with the fabulous memories that this wonderful man left us. My thoughts to Stephanie and the rest of his family. A sad, sad time.
Peter Stokes, UK

I'll always remember these numbers - like a song: seven and 188, 48 km/h, the fantastic average of the famous year in Silverstone...Ciao Barry!
Andrea Di Mario, Italy

He was my childhood hero, he will be sadly missed but never forgotten. He was the main reason for my love of bikes. Thanks for all the great memories. My thoughts are with his family.
Kenny, Israel

Sadly missed by: Allan Stephenson, Darren Whittaker, Paul Smith, John Greenwood, Kathleen Stephenson.
Allan Stephenson, UK

As for many, Barry was a childhood hero for me. His actions on the racetrack were often as exciting, as his actions on the podium.

After surviving a bad bike crash, the biggest inspiration to get back on a bike was Barry
Peter Burnand, UK

He was an irreplaceable character, and will be missed sadly. We really looked forward to see him race at the Goodwood Revival weekend this year. Our deepest sympathy goes out to his family.
Chris Peeters, Netherlands

The end of an era for me. Barry Sheene was motorcycling! He will be sadly missed. Goodbye Barry.
N Bunford, UK

Barry Sheene's pictures sat right up there next to my Bowie posters. Barry is as much a hero of mine today as he was all those years ago. RIP Fella.
Nick Scotting, USA

After surviving a bad bike crash, the biggest inspiration to get back on a bike was Barry; I still have my number seven t-shirt from the '70's. Rest in peace mate. Ride free.
Peter Burnand, UK

Barry, so brilliant, inspirational and charismatic, I will miss you. Thanks for everything mate. To Stephanie and family, my thoughts are with you.
Russ Dowsing, UK

Barry's death has touched the heart of many all around the world. I have only been in his company once, but his presence made my trip to a Goodwood revival meeting worth every penny. He inspired so many people around the whole globe and is held in such high esteem in all circles of life. RIP Barry - you were a true international sporting hero.
Nick Byas, Zimbabwe

Here's to the bionic super biker. The humour will be missed.
Lindsay Smith, New Zealand

I remember his great battles with Kenny Roberts in the 70s
Tim Hall, UK

I am 46 years old and have many memories of Barry racing in the '70s. He was a lovely person who will be very sadly missed.
Angela Roberts, England

A true sporting hero, who remained one of the people, he never looked down at his fans. We will miss you Barry, but you will never be forgotten.
Dave Cottage, England

Barry was one of my all time heroes; he was charming, brave and completely down to earth. Although I never met him, I feel as though I have lost a friend.
Tracy, UK

Watching Barry beat Kenny at Brands Hatch was a highlight of my youth. Thanks Barry for making being Britsh and riding bikes cool and something to be proud of.
Mike Bridgman, Canada

Condolences from NZ Post Classic Register. My son met Barry at Phillip Island in January 2002 and was sorry he could not get there this year. Regards Malcolm Wilton President, NZ Post Classic Racing Register.
Malcolm Wilton, New Zealand

My first introduction to m/c racing was the British GP at Silverstone with my now husband. We held Barry in such high regard we named our only child after him and our first cat. Sunday we were watching legends of motorsport and they featured the 1979 race which he lost by inches to Kenny Roberts. His name brings happy memories of many days spent watching him all around the UK. He will be sadly missed.
Caroline Skipp, USA

I remember his great battles with Kenny Roberts in the 70s, but more than that I was privileged to see him ride at Goodwood in recent years. He was a great rider and a great sportsman. He will be sadly missed.
Tim Hall, UK

A great champion, a great hero and a great man
Damian Chapman, Australia

A great champion, a great hero and a great man. The world has become a little less cheerful without one of natures Gentlemen
Damian Chapman, Australia Barry Sheene was a pivotal influence in encouraging me to ride a motorcycle. Thanks to him setting me upon that path I've enjoyed more than 20 years of great experiences - I never thought of him as mortal. He was and it's a shock.
Nigel Wright, UK

I'm 38 years old and Barry Sheene has remained a hero to this day. I was close to tears yesterday and I never even met the man! What a legend, I even had a plate and a few screws fitted in my leg after trying to emulate him on my FS1E. I saw him at Goodwood in 2001 when he started from the back of the grid after his Norton exploded in practise. It was one of the best races I have ever seen; he got to the front and only narrowly missed victory.
Clive Barber, UK

I met Barry at a sponsor's autograph session. We had brief chat about his racing and I left. Three years later at a race meeting I met him again. I was thrilled and amazed that that he remembered me as being from Bath. For me, Barry Sheene will be a star without equal.
M Ward, England

I know other bikers would agree we have lost a mate. Although a legend Barry never forgot he was one of us.
Sav, England

Mallory Park Clubhouse, race of the Year 1975. A crowd of us in the bar after Saturday practice talking bikes when in walks Barry Sheene and Kenny Roberts. We invited them over and had one of the best nights I can ever remember talking bikes and drinking more than a few beers. How those two raced the next day is beyond me, I can't even remember now who won, but then again who cares?

I'm from the Isle of Man and although Barry was never a fan of the TT when he was racing that never stopped him being a hero as far as I was concerned. If you rode bikes back in the late 70s it was almost compulsory to have had the "Who dyou think you are, Barry Sheene?" from plod at least once.

Sincere condolences to all his family. RIP.
Nigel Sherwin, Chile




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