Sunday, 23 October 2011

RIP Marco Simoncelli 1987-2011

I can't believe for second weekend in a row that top level motorsport is facing a fatality.

Italian Marco Simoncelli was certainly a character on the MotoGP circuit and even though he was only racing in that series for a second season, the 24 year old had been around motorsport for a decade. If you had watched any MotoGP over the last two seasons you would have had no problems picking out Marco from the rest while helmets were off. His hair stood out like a mop exploding when he took his helmet off at the end of a race, and hardly allowing him to put a cap on at the finish.

But he brought the same flamboyance to the track. He was one who would take riders on, sometimes passing at spots that nobody thought it was possible to pass. But he would take his racing to his opponents from start to finish.

He was having just that sort of battle with Alvaro Bautista in Seapng today when going into a corner his leg came off and over the bike. Bautista was able to avoid him but Colin Edwards and Valentino Rossi coming up behind didn't have an option as coming out of the bend and levelling their bikes up Marco's machine careered back across the track, him still hanging on to the inside side of it, into their paths. His helmet came off  just as Edwards came into contact with him and Rossi soon afterwards. Edwards came off his bike and both he, his bike and the empty helmet skidded unto the grass while Simoncelli's limb body skidded to a halt on the track while Rossi remained upright and rode over the grass.

The race was red flagged and the medical teams did what they could to revive the Italian, but he was pronounced dead at the in track medical centre at 4:56pm local time.

Last year on the same track Simoncelli split a helmet in practice this year it came off in a horrific impact. At the age of 24 without a MotoGP title but as the 2008 250cc World Champion he was taken too soon doing the sport he had spent over half his life competing in.

Marco Simoncelli 1987-2011

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