Shell Advance Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix

MotoGP Info | Sun, 23 October 2011

The Shell Advance Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix was red flagged and subsequently cancelled on Sunday after Marco Simoncelli suffered a serious accident, crashing on the second lap of the MotoGP race at the Sepang International Circuit.

Despite immediate medical attention and the best efforts of the entire medical team at the circuit, Marco tragically succumbed to his injuries shortly after the incident. A press conference was held at which members of the Race Direction Paul Butler, Claude Danis, Franco Uncini and Javier Alonso were joined by Medical Director Doctor Michele Macchiagodena to explain the circumstances of Marco's death. Paul Butler opened the press conference, saying: "The purpose of this press conference is to apprise you of the circumstances that resulted in the tragic death of Marco Simoncelli. You know who we all are, the Race Direction; Claude Danis who is the FIM representative, Javier Alonso the Dorna representative, Franco Uncini the riders' representative, and I'm Paul Butler the IRTA representative and Race Director. Michele Macchiagodena is our Medical Director and he will explain to you the circumstances that resulted in this death."

Doctor Michele Macchiagodena said: "I'm very sad to be here to report about the death of Marco Simoncelli, a friend. Because of the crash he had during the race, in which he was hit by other riders, he suffered a very serious trauma to the head, to the neck and the chest. When our medical staff got to him he was unconscious. In the ambulance because there was a cardiac arrest they started CPR (cardiac pulmonary resuscitation). Immediately in the Medical Centre, with the help also of the Doctor of our staff at the Clinica Mobile and local Doctors, he was intubated and it was possible to take off some blood from the thorax. The CPR was continued for 45 minutes because we tried to help him for as long as we thought it was possible. Unfortunately it was not possible to help him and at 16:56 (local time) we had to declare he was dead."

Paul Butler responded to a question about Marco Simoncelli's helmet coming off in the crash by saying: "I think if I may reply, that will be for another occasion. Quite clearly the consequences and circumstances surrounding the accident will be thoroughly investigated."

Answering a question about the condition of Colin Edwards, who was involved in the incident, Michele Macchiagodena said: "He had a dislocation of the shoulder and with anaesthesia the shoulder now is in the correct position. He is fine."

Paul Butler concluded the press conference by adding: "Our sympathies go to his family and we want to show every respect possible to Marco."

Before the tragic accident, the Moto2 and 125cc races were run.

In the Moto2 event Thomas Luthi (Interwetten Paddock Moto2) took his first intermediate class victory from pole position in a race which was red flagged due to a crash for Axel Pons with 17 of the 19 scheduled laps completed. Stefan Bradl (Viessmann Kiefer Racing) and Pol Espargaro (HP Tuenti Speed Up) completed the podium, as Marc Marquez sat out the race having not been passed fit following a crash in FP1 on Friday. The title will now be decided at the final round in Valencia in two weeks, with Bradl leading Marquez by 23 points at the top of the standings.

In the 125cc race Maverick Vinales (Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing) took his third victory of his rookie season, with Sandro Cortese (Intact Racing Team Germany) and Johann Zarco (Avant-AirAsia-Ajo) also on the podium. Championship leader Nico Terol (Bankia Aspar) was fighting for a podium spot when he had a massive moment on the final lap, holding onto his bike to finish fifth. The Spaniard leads the standings by 20 points ahead of Zarco going into the final round at Valencia.