Billy Kennedy has been awarded with honorary life membership of Cycling Ireland. Billy has played a leading role in cycling administration since the age of 17 when he became secretary of the National Cycling Association. His contribution to Irish Cycling continued for many years to come as he held various roles including Records Secretary and Treasurer.
Cycling Ireland President Ciaran McKenna commented:
“Cycling Ireland wanted to acknowledge Billy’s contribution by bestowing an Honorary Life Member award to acknowledge his huge contribution to the Olympic movement, Irish Cycling and Irish sport in general over a 50-year time span. Whatever role Billy held in Irish Cycling or the Olympic movement he fulfilled it with a level of professionalism that benefitted both organisations.”
As the Irish delegate to the UCI Congress in Seoul, he proposed that the amalgamation of the three cycling bodies operating in Ireland at the time be recognised by the UCI.
Billy was a selector for the first Tripartite Committee Irish national teams alongside Brendan Madden and Pat McQuaid and was Irish National Team Manager for the Tour of Britain and Ruban Granitier stage races. In 1995 Billy Kennedy was elected President of the Federation of Irish Cyclists.
Billy’s contribution to the development of Irish Cycling continued as he was involved in securing the Giro d’Italia visit to Ireland and a £50,000 grant from the UCI for a development initiative in the early 1990s.
Billy was first elected to the Olympic Council of Ireland executive committee in 1992 and retained involvement within various roles until December 2020. During his time with the OCI Billy held roles as logistics officer for multiple Olympic Games, Chef de Mission for the 1997 European Youth Olympics and Deputy Chef de Mission for the 2003 European Youth Olympics.
As well as managing Tipperary cycling teams competing in the Rás and organising events such as the John Hearn Memorial 3 Day, Billy was a decorated athlete. He is a winner of 4 All-Ireland Track Cycling Championships and a 10-time Munster Champion.
Billy Kennedy currently holds the position of President of the Panduit Carrick Wheelers Cycling Club, which has produced some of Ireland’s top cyclists including Tour de France green jersey winner Sam Bennett.