Motorcycling: Simoncelli dies after crash on another traumatic day - Motor Racing - Sport - The Independent

Motorcycling: Simoncelli dies after crash on another traumatic day

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

 

Italian MotoGP rider Marco Simoncelli died after a horrific crash at the Malaysian Grand Prix in Sepang yesterday, completing a harrowing week for motorsport after British IndyCar driver Dan Wheldon lost his life last weekend.

Simoncelli, 24, crashed on the second lap and was hit by the bikes of Colin Edwards and Valentino Rossi as he slid across the track on his Honda. His helmet was knocked off in the incident and the season's penultimate race was stopped immediately with a red flag and then cancelled.

Yamaha's Edwards also came off his bike but escaped serious injury, while Rossi was able to coax his Ducati back to the pits. Simoncelli lay stricken on the track before being taken to the circuit's medical centre where he was pronounced dead.

"Everybody involved in MotoGP extends its deepest condolences to Marco's family, friends and team at this tragic loss," MotoGP said in a statement.

Casey Stoner, who won his second MotoGP title at his home Australian Grand Prix last week, said: "As soon as I saw the footage it just makes you sick inside. Whenever the helmet comes off that's not a good sign."

Medical director Michele Macchiagodena said Simoncelli was already unconscious when medics reached him. "He was hit by other riders, he suffered a very serious trauma to the head, to the neck and the chest," he said. "In the ambulance there was a cardiac arrest."

Macchiagodena added: "[Edwards] had a dislocation of the shoulder and with anaesthetic the shoulder now is in the correct position. He is fine."

Simoncelli's death is the first in the sport's premier class since another Honda rider, Daijiro Kato, was killed at the 2003 Japanese Grand Prix. Kato's fellow Japanese Shoya Tomizawa also died in a similar crash to Simoncelli in Moto2, the class below MotoGP, last year.

Simoncelli, known for his shaggy haircut and fun-loving personality, began his career in the 125cc class in 2002 before moving up to the 250cc in 2006, winning the world title in that class in 2008.

MotoGP bosses and riders have been working hard to improve safety following Tomizawa's death at the San Marino Grand Prix in September 2010. However, they have acknowledged there is little more they can do given the implicit danger in motorcycling, especially when riders are hit by other bikes.

All Italian sports events on Sunday will observe a minute's silence in memory of Simoncelli, the Italian Olympic Committee said in a statement. Milan wore black armbands during their Serie A win over Lecce.

Nicky Hayden, the 2006 champion who rides for Italian team Ducati, was heartbroken. "It is a really horrible day for all of us," the American said. "I saw Marco fall. Leaving the corner he lost the back end and probably he didn't manage to regain his balance on the bike. I feel really bad. On the track we are all brothers."

Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Robin Thicke's video for 'Blurred Lines' has been criticised for condoning rape
music
News
Paper trail: the wedding photograph found in the rubble after 9/11 – it took Elizabeth Keefe 13 years to find the people in it
newsWho are the people in this photo? It took Elizabeth Stringer Keefe 13 years to find out
Arts and Entertainment
Matt Damon as Jason Bourne in The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)
filmMatt Damon in talks to return
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Evil eye: Douglas Adams in 'mad genius' pose
booksNew biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
News
peopleThe report and photo dedicated to the actress’s decolletage has, unsurprisingly, provoked anger
Life and Style
Bono and Apple CEO Tim Cook announced U2's surprise new album at the iPhone 6 launch
tech(but you can't escape: Bono is always on your iPhone)
Sport
FootballFull debuts don't come much more stylish than those on show here
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
filmsDaniel Craig is believed to be donning skies as 007 for the first time
Arts and Entertainment
Fringe show: 'Cilla', with Sheridan Smith in the title role and Aneurin Barnard as her future husband Bobby Willis
tvEllen E Jones on ITV's 'Cilla'
News
i100
Sport
Tim Wiese
sport
Life and Style
Kim Kardashian drawn backlash over her sexy swimsuit selfie, called 'disgusting' and 'nasty'
fashionCritics say magazine only pays attention to fashion trends among rich, white women
Arts and Entertainment
TVShows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Arts and Entertainment
Hit the roof: hot-tub cinema east London
architectureFrom pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week