Yesterday, more than one friend contacted me extremely upset about the death of Luis Salom. One actually felt guilty he’s been supporting a sport that kills young men.
I had the pleasure of a few good conversations with Luis at Cartagena Circuit on my many visits there. He was great to talk with and seemed older than his 24 years which lead me to think he’d done many years of racing, traveling and seen a lot.
It’s super sad what happened. His bike went into the air fence ahead of him, bounced out and stopped. It looked to me like he then went in just as fast but had the horrible luck of hitting the bike.
I raced national championships, World Superbikes and GP’s. GP’s are as safe as our sport gets. After I’d retired from racing which spanned 20 years if I include Motocross, I sustained my worst injury ever riding head-on into a car that appeared on my side of the road.
As I told my very upset friends yesterday, young guys search out risky things to do and sometimes get killed, but racing saved me. It got me away from fellow naughty boys breaking the law for kicks, doing nothing to be proud of and putting ourselves and other public road users in real danger. Racing got me focused, fit, healthy and traveling the world. I won recognition, respect, self respect and money, plus it taught me the hard facts about life. Apart from my wife Kirsten, racing is the best thing that ever happened to me.
Goodbye Luis. I will miss our chats at Cartagena and I’m sure the GP paddock will miss you dearly.