Obituary - Norman Sheil

Obituary - Norman Sheil


British Cycling was saddened to learn of the passing of Norman Sheil last week.

Sheil, who passed away at his home in Canada at the age of 86, was a legendary figure in the sport, having amassed a wonderful collection of achievements as both a rider and coach.

The Merseyside-born rider twice won the pursuit world championship title (1955 and 1958), and was also crowned Commonwealth individual pursuit champion in 1954 and 1958. His career later saw him switch to the road, and he appeared at the Tour de France in 1960.

Following his retirement, Sheil moved into coaching, first in his native Britain, as national team coach, and latterly with the national teams of the USA and Canada, where he coached the country’s first ever world cycling champion, Gordon Singleton.

He returned to racing later on in life, winning the points race title at the 1998 UCI World Masters Championships.

Bob Howden OBE, British Cycling President, said:

“As I began my own cycling career in the late 1960s, Norman had moved from being a world-class athlete into becoming one of the world’s best coaches. At my young age then, I was never to meet him, but I was close to a number of people who had raced with him, had been coached by him and some who had been influenced by his innovative methods as they became coaches themselves.

“In an era of scarce resources Norman achieved success for himself and was instrumental in others achieving theirs. We can look back with both pride and admiration at Norman’s contribution to the world of cycling.”

Norman Sheil at Herne Hill, 1958.