Japanese rider Tomizawa dies at San Marino race

September 5th, 2010 - 9:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Misano (Italy), Sep 5 (DPA) Japanese motorcyclist Shoya Tomizawa died of injuries sustained in a crash at Sunday’s San Marino Moto2 Grand Prix. He was 19 years old.
Racing in fourth place at the time, Tomizawa lost control on a kerb in the 12th lap of the race at the Misano World Circuit. He fell and was run over at high speed by the next two riders, Italy’s Alex de Angelis and Scott Redding of Britain.

Tomizawa was taken to hospital but died there of the crash injuries.

“Shoya Tomizawa suffered a serious crash and subsequent cranial, thoracic and abdominal trauma. Tomizawa was taken to the hospital of Riccione for immediate treatment but succumbed to his injuries at 14.20 (local time - 1220 GMT),” said a statement from race directors on the MotoGP website.

“All the MotoGP family wants to express its deepest condolences to his family and friends,” the statement said.

De Angelis reportedly walked away unharmed while Redding required treatment on so far undisclosed injuries at the circuit.

“We were both at full speed. I tried everything to hit his bike and not him when Tomizawa crashed. It is unbelievable that I am unhurt,” de Angelis was quoted as saying.

Tomizawa, who competed for the Suter team, was in his second season. He made history when he won the inaugural Moto2 class (formerly 250cc) race in Qatar this season. He came second at the following event in Spain and was ranked sixth in the standings ahead of Sunday’s race.

Other riders were shocked by Tomizawa’s death.

“For the race everything was perfect but now I’m totally shocked. Now my head is away from the race. There are no words,” Spain’s Dani Pedroso told Italian Mediaset television after winning the following MotoGP class race.

Italian multiple MotoGP world champion Valentino Rossi told the same network: “When things like this happen nothing else matters. He was a lovely guy, it was a horrible accident.”

Tomizawa is the first rider to die in Grand Prix motorcycling since compatriot Daijiro Kato at the Suzuka home race in 2003. The previous race fatality was also a Japanese, Noboyuki Wakai, at the 1993 Spanish GP in Jerez.

Last weekend American Peter Lenz, 13, died in Indianapolis when he was run over by a 12-year-old rival after falling in the warmup lap for a junior race.

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