Upali Dassanayake (on right) during a Vijayabahu Motocross media conference
Former Sri Lanka motor racing champion rider and MP Upali Dassanayake who died in his sixties was renowned for bringing down the 1000cc Honda and also the 500cc motorcycles for racing to Sri Lanka.
Educated at Maliyadeva College, Kurunegala Upali was President of the Federation of Motorcycle Sports in Sri Lanka, President of Sri Lanka Racing Riders Association, Chairman of the Pannala International Racing Circuit which he built, President of the Motor Cycles and Spare Parts Importers Association, sole proprietor of Goldwing Motors and Travels and Chairman of Goldwing Group of Companies.
Former President of the Motorcycle Club, the Sri Lanka Association for Motor Sports, Controlling Body for Motor Sports and Secretary of the Ceylon Motor Sports Club Rajah Sinnathuray paying tribute to Upali said: “He was one of the finest riders produced by Sri Lanka. He was a technically good rider and he was the one who brought the 1000cc and 500cc bikes to Sri Lanka. As a person he was a simple man and he was not proud when he raced and won many laurels. He was friendly with everybody and mixed with the other racing riders.”
Upali was a former Member of Parliament for Pannala. His brother Major-General Ivan Dassanayake was also a rider.
Upali’s cremation took place at the Pannala International Racing Circuit yesterday.