Photo courtesy Grant Paterson

Photo courtesy Grant Paterson

New Zealand is where Maria Costello MBE heads to next week to race at the Barry Sheene Motorcycle Classic at the Hampton Downs race track.

Maria, the first woman to stand on the podium at the iconic Isle of Man, is making her second visit to the southern hemisphere to race, having appeared at the Barry Sheene Festival of Speed in Australia in March.

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Taking place over the weekend of 24-25-26 October, the race meeting champions classic and post classic solo racing, classic and modern sidecars and this year will celebrate women motorcycle racers from Australia and New Zealand.

Costello commented: “I’m thrilled and very honoured to be heading to New Zealand to race as a special guest at the Barry Sheene Motorcycle Classic. Especially as it’s celebrating women in motorcycling. It ties in perfectly with my role as an FIM Women’s Training Camp Instructor and being on the FIM Women’s commission. It’s an experience I’ve dreamed of and I’m totally blown away to get this opportunity so soon after racing in Oz. Huge thanks to all those that have made this happen.”

After a fifth in the recent 500 Classic TT, Maria is no stranger to riding classic machinery and will be back on board Steve Kairl’s 1988 Honda RS125 and Rob Francis’ Honda VFR400 that she rode in Australia. Other rides will include a Manx Norton, owned by Bruce Verdon of TT Industries (specialists in motorcycle gearboxes) and possibly even an Aermacchi.

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Costello added: “Racing in Australia was a dream come true I met so many fabulous people so I’m really looking forward to catching up with them again. Massive gratitude goes to the owners; Steve, Rob and Bruce for giving me their machinery to compete on and make another of my dreams a reality.”

Despite being a long way from home, Costello will aim to keep race fans up to date with her racing in New Zealand via her social media and website pages.

To follow Maria on Twitter, please go to: https://twitter.com/MariaCostello. You can also ‘like’ Maria’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Maria-Costello-Racing/43701311579

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For details on Maria’s racing and other activities, including opportunities to support her racing efforts, please visit her website: http://www.costelloracing.com

Photo VFR400 courtesy Ray Oxford

Photo VFR400 courtesy Ray Oxford

Tony Carter

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