For some two wheels are better than four. The connection with the motorcycle is almost an organic thing. Barry Furber is a technician at Greenhous Vauxhall on Old Potts Way, Shrewsbury and he has a passion for motorcycle racing.
Barry, who lives in Bishops Castle, has spent 14 years working for Greenhous and in that time he has advanced from an apprentice technician to a qualified MOT tester and Gold Level Vauxhall technician, also attaining the national Automotive Technician Accreditation award. His hobby is motorcycle road racing, regularly competing in race meetings all over the country on his Suzuki SV650 in the Supertwins class.
Barry says: “In recent years I have had some great results on the short circuit and now my main focus is racing at the Isle of Man on the world famous TT circuit.” When did this interest in motorcycles start? At the tender age of 6 Barry was introduced to a motorcycle by his father. Initially he attended motorcycle trials with obstacle racing, but this all changed when he reached 16 years of age. By this time he was experienced and skilled enough to ride for Wales in championships. By the age of 17 he was running the Total Trials Motor Display Team with some friends and appearing at the likes of the Minsterley show.
Barry moved into enduro-racing, off road courses of obstacles and challenges, before moving into road racing, which has remained his favourite pastime. Barry enthuses about his bikes: “My first road racing bike was a Suzuki GSXR 600 which I bought for £600 and I entered as an independent racer. In my second year MJF Racing was formed with help from my Dad. I was second in the Wirral 100 championship in my first year of entry and won the 2013 Wirral 100 championship Supertwin class and lightweight open class.
“In 2014 I raced the TT circuit for the first time at the Manx Grand Prix and finished 2nd in the newcomers race with an average speed of 108mph. This was a fantastic result for me especially because I was using a low powered standard engine.
“For 2015 I am planning to return to the Isle of Man to race again in the Manx Grand Prix. I am currently in the process of building a new engine with more power to ensure that I am competitive. I think I can comfortably run within the top 10, but my goal will be to improve on my best average speed of 108mph around the 38mile circuit. Unlike many of the top teams in the race I build my own bike and fund the whole venture myself.” The racing season commences for Barry with a race at Anglesey on the 29th March followed by an event at Oulton Park on the 25th April.
Barry has booked his holiday for the end of August and will be off to the Isle of Man to practice and re-learn the course before aiming to compete with the best riders at the TT.