Motorcycle training school owner meets - and helps - his hero Rea

The owner of a Broughshane based motorcycle training school has told of how one evening a few months back he answered the phone to the words “Hello Stephen, this is Jonathan Rea”.

Wednesday, 8th September 2021, 9:07 am

The call came as quite a surprise to Stephen Mills who is a huge fan of the globally renowned professional motorcycle racer.

It transpired that the six times World Super Bike Champion, who travels at speeds in excess of 200mph at weekends, had never got around to getting a road licence for a motorcycle.

Stephen, who owns Moto Training NI which offers everything from trial lessons to advanced training, said: “As a huge Jonathan Rea fan, it was an honour that he chose my wee school to do his training.”

Stephen pictured with Jonathan Rea at the handover of Jonathan's new bike

Juggling spare time between his busy race calendar, Jonathan completed his Compulsory Basic Training, followed by lessons towards both practical tests.

Stephen revealed that champion motorcyclist Jonathan, who won the world superbike championship six times: in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020, passed both tests with flying colours.

Stephen said: “After Jonathan passed his final test, he ordered a new Kawasaki Z900RS from Coleraine Kawasaki – the same dealer that provides my school bikes.

“I was delighted to be invited to the handover of Jonathan getting his new bike.”

Moto Training NI owner Stephen Mills with Jonathan Rea MBE

Jonathan Rea, who was inducted into the Mid & East Antrim Sporting Hall of Fame in 2018 and was given Honorary Freedom of the Borough of Antrim and Newtownabbey in 2019 and of Mid and East Antrim in 2021, is currently bidding to win the world crown for a seventh year.