Junior Heffernan: Tribute from Best Friend


Gregg Shrosbree pays tribute to one of his best friends, Junior Heffernan who died racing at the Severn Bridge Road Race which shocked us all in the cycling community

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Greg writes …“I first met Junior while at school together down in Devon. At the time I was on the National development swim team and Junior was in the triathlon squad. We used to train together on a regular basis and our relationship developed through our passion for sport. He always had a smile on his face and a positive outlook on life.”


Rest in Peace Junior – pictured here in his last race… Photo: Chris Rhymer - PhotoSport International. uk usa asia

As time went on and I moved back home to Dorset, me and Junior remained in contact and I would always see him popping up in the results at big tri races, both at home and abroad. Our paths then crossed again a few years later at the Horton road race, I had just started racing on the road and Junior had also decided to switch from Triathlon to Cycling. It was nice for both of us to have someone in the peloton we knew and could talk to before and after races.

Junior quickly moved up the ranks and gained his 1st cat license in his first season, showing he had the talent and racing brain required to be a top level rider. Our closest moments however, were when we both had the opportunity to race for the season in France. When I found out I would be living and racing on the same team as Junior, it helped me deal with moving away from home and being in a foreign country. We both found ourselves dealing with our own demons out there after numerous bad crashes and a lack of support. We only had each other and without Junior, I would have fallen to pieces much sooner.

Junior had a burning desire to prove he had what it took to be the best and with the support of a great UK team for 2013 I knew he would have done something special. My thoughts go out to Junior’s parents Bernard and Denise. I can’t begin to imagine how they’re feeling at this moment in time. They only wanted the best for their son and I know he really wanted to show them what he could this year, they were so proud watching their son pursuing his dream of becoming a professional cyclist.

Finally I hope this incident at the weekend gives the organisers at British Cycling the wakeup call which has been waiting to happen for a long time. Racing on open roads has always been dangerous and why we have not followed the likes of Belgium, France and many other countries by closing the roads or allowing a 5 minute rules for cars up the road to wait for the race to pass I don’t know. It’s just a shame that someone had to lose a Son, Brother, Cousin and Friend for these changes to be addressed.

You will always be in my Thoughts J “

Gregg Shrosbree rides for VC Meudon,was a recent finisher at the Perfs Pedal race and was looking forward to a good season on the road.Gregg found it hard to put these words down on paper but wanted to honour his best friend and cycling buddy.

Thanks to Eamonn Deane for passing that tribute onto us.

From the team website: “Junior was an Elite rider who joined the team this year after racing in France the previous season. He was a young man with an enormous talent and enthusiasm for bike racing. His out going personality and infectious nature meant that for the short time that his team mates knew him he was welcomed and well liked by all and the team were excited by the prospect of seeing him race. Junior was an exceptional climber who was signed to strengthen the team in this field.

The team and family would like to thank members of the South Western Ambulance Service, Avon and Somerset Constabulary, all the members of the Bristol Road Club and British Cycling who have assisted during this tragic accident.”

The Managers and Team Members would like to pass on their condolensces to the friends and family of Junior Heffernan at this difficult time.

You can leave a message on the VeloUK Facebook page with the 80 plus other messages which are an example of just how much this tragic event has affected the cycling community.







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