It has been a very sad 12 hours as the sun has risen across the world and it as woken to the news that Marco Simoncelli was tragically killed after a horrific crash yesterday which forced the cancellation of the Malaysian MotoGP.
For those of you who have been following me for a while it will come as no surprise at why this saddens me so much. I am alittle bit of a Motogp junkie. I know that sounds a bit crazy. Mother of 2, Vespa (scooter) rider whose driving/riding style can be best described as being like a senior citizen … liking a sport where speed is the king. Doesn’t quite fit … but I am. I love the sport. I enjoy watching the races and even follow some of my favourites on twitter and facebook.
One reasons I love it is because that while it is highly dangerous, they do take (what I would think) every measure possible to make it as safe as possible. For those that don’t know motorcyle racing you will probably think that that last statement is extremely misguided but if you compare the racing conditions of any of the Motogp tracks with the Isle of Man TT you will know what I mean. I just can’t watch the Isle of Man because the risks are just too great. If you search Isle of Man and dangerous you will see that there are over 3 million possible pages with at the moment the top a page with the heading calling it the “most dangerous sporting even on earth”. Motogp isn’t like that.
Commentators has stated that while there are dangers inherent in Motogp, they describe the 24-year-old’s death as a “freak accident”. The crash occurred just minutes after the race began when the Marco’s bike veered across the track and into the paths of riders Colin Edwards and Valentino Rossi. His helmet was knocked off in the ensuing collision on turn 11. The race was stopped immediately with the red flag and he was transported by ambulance to the circuit medical centre where the medical staff worked to resuscitate him. Despite their efforts, Marco sadly succumbed to his injuries at 4:56pm local time. (7:56pm ADEST). MotoGP later announced his death on its website.
It is such a sad day. He was just such a talented rider with so much promise … and just so full of life and happiness. He was a joy to watch on the track and off. Simoncelli had started in the 125cc class in 2002 and moved up to the 250cc class in 2006. He claimed the 250cc world title in 2008. In 2010 he joined the Motogp class and won his first pole position at the Catalunya race in June that year. His first podium was in the Czech Republic in August (2011) when he was third and improved on that with the second place at the Australian GP. One of the things I loved about him was his ability to look at wins and losses with a smile and a laugh. He seemed like such a lovely person that was liked by everyone on the paddock. Motogp lost a great rider and potential champion today … but more importantly lost a lovely person.
I think it is best to close by including the quotes from the Honda Press Release from his team mates
Shuhei Nakamoto, HRC Executive Vice President, says “I just don’t know what to say; words escape me. Marco was a very nice guy and a very talented rider. Sometimes I was a little harsh with him, for example after his first MotoGP podium in Brno when I told him, ‘Lucky podium!’ and he was so angry, but I wanted to motivate him as I knew he was able to do even more. I was thinking that when he won his first race we would have been able to celebrate together. Now I just want to say thank you to Marco, for what you gave me, and pass my sincere condolences to his family at this very sad time.”
Repsol Honda rider Dani Pedrosa says, “In a tragedy like this there is not much to say. I just want to give my condolences to his family and all the people who love him. I’ve been with his father and all we could do was to hug, nothing else matters. It was a fatal accident and everybody in the paddock remains in shock. Many times we ourselves forget how dangerous this sport can be and when you lose people on the way nothing has any meaning. It’s clear that we all do what we like, what we love, but on days like today nothing matters.”
Repsol Honda rider Andrea Dovizioso says, “In these circumstances, words don’t seem to be appropriate. I think of Marco’s family and all the people dear to him, in particular his father and mother. I also have a child and what happened today is the hardest situation you can imagine. I watched the images and I’m shocked. In a race you fight and push hard and disaster is often around the corner. Marco was a strong rider and he always pushed hard. We raced together since we were kids. I saw him always pushing to the maximum, he crashed many times, but without major injuries, he was seemed invincible. What happened today seems impossible.”
Repsol Honda rider Casey Stoner says, “I’m so shocked and saddened by the loss of Marco. When things like this happen it reminds you how precious life is, it makes me feel sick inside. All I can say is how sorry I am for Marco’s whole family I can’t imagine what they are all going through and our thoughts and wishes are with them at this time. I hope they all stay close and pull through this tragedy together.”