are raising the Barr
Sisk & Sons Business Development Manager for Northern
Ireland, Mark Barr, will be in Croke Park on Sunday to cheer on
Donegal as they bid to bring home Sam Maguire for the first time
A native of Burt, who retained their Donegal SHC title courtesy
of a 3-14 to 1-12 victory over Sean MacCumhaills in Letterkenny
last Saturday, Mark is enjoying the build-up to Sundays big
showdown with Mayo, and is quietly confident that Jim McGuinness
men can emulate the feat of Brian McEniffs heroes 20 years
Jim has done a fantastic job with this team. The progress
theyve made over the last two years has been huge, he
What makes this Donegal team different from those weve
seen in the past is that they are both mentally and physically strong.
I think its the first time any Donegal manager has managed
to marry the two. Not only are they supremely fit, they also have
a winning mentality and huge self-belief. Donegal always had the
core ingredients, but they were lacking in other areas until Jim
became manager. They are highly motivated and dont fear anyone.
Mark has been especially impressed by how Donegal have developed
and added to their game plan since last year when they were criticised
for being overly defensive.
Theyve been able to bring all parts of their game to
a higher level this year. They still get a lot of men behind the
ball, but are able to attack at pace now. Theyve been scoring
much more freely than last year and deserve to win an All-Ireland
for all the work theyve put in. Theyve already taken
the scalps of Tyrone, Kerry and Cork this year, and Im hopeful
that they will be able to finish the job against Mayo.
Mark has also been impressed by Mayo, and feels that Donegal will
need to be at their best to beat them.
Itll be a tough game for Donegal because Mayo have progressed
as well. Theyve improved with every game since the Connacht
final and played some great football in the semi-final against Dublin.
Donegal have the beating of them, but itll be close. Theyre
huge pride in both counties and they could have sold out Croke Park
twice over. Whoever wins it will be celebrating for months to come,
Mark played GAA during his school days, but his family is more associated
with cycling and motor sport. His brother Joe won bronze medals
in cycling at the Commonwealth Games in 1986 and 1990 and more recently
the endurance race around Ireland, while his 11-year-old son Reece
is making a name for himself in karting with his team RB Motorsport.
Mark joined construction giants Sisk in 2007 to re-establish the
companys business centre in Northern Ireland. Sisk had operated
in Belfast back in the 1970s, but its interest in the North had
waned before Mark whose background is in project management
set about reversing that trend.
It was a big challenge to break back into Northern Ireland
market, he recalls. It is equally as competitive as
the southern market and very relationship driven. even if the project
scale isnt quite as big. Weve made good headway and
have won major contracts such as the Bombardier Aerospace production
facility in Belfast, Seagate Technology in Derry, Belfast Harbour,
and the NYSE Headquarters in Belfast. Northern Ireland is now an
important market for Sisk contributing to a regional turnover of
over £100 million per annum and rising.
John Sisk & Son and its associated companies have been involved
in major infrastructure development since the 1950s, building many
of Irelands roads, bridges, power stations, airports and harbours.
It has also been responsible for the redevelopment of Croke Park
and Lansdowne Road (Aviva Stadium).
The company, which was established by John Sisk in Cork in 1859,
operates as an international integrated business with current projects
in Ireland, Northern Ireland, the UK and Poland. John Sisk &
Son undertakes works in a mix of traditional, joint venture and
public-private partnership formats including Early Contractor
Involvement (ECI) projects, which enhance the delivery and cost
effectiveness of the finished scheme.
Sisk will be bidding to win the £76.4 contract to redevelop
Casement Park in Belfast into a 40,000 all-seater stadium. The work
on the home of Antrim GAA is expected to last for 21 months and
be completed by 2015. A formal application for planning permission
will be submitted by the end of March 2013.
We will be bringing our strengths as an Irish Stadia builder
to the table in our bid to secure this prestigious contract,