Carlin Dunne has died after crashing just before the finish line of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. The racer, actor and stuntman was attempting to set a new record in the Hill Climb on a prototype Ducati Streetfighter V4. Through the first three sections of the course, Dunne was well on his way towards setting the record, but a big bump in the road near the finish line caused the front wheel of the Streetfighter V4 prototype to wash out from under him, ending in the disastrous result.
Racer William Dunlop of the famed road racing Dunlop family has died after crashing during practice in a race in Ireland. The older brother of Michael Dunlop, William was the son of Robert Dunlop and nephew of the great Joey Dunlop, both of whom also died while racing. William Dunlop was 32.
Racing fans the world over were gutted today after hearing the news that Nicky Hayden, the 2006 MotoGP world champion, has succumbed to injuries suffered in a bicycle accident last week. Hayden, a.k.a. the Kentucky Kid, was one of the roadracing fraternity’s favorite sons, known globally as a terrific ambassador for the sport and one of the racing world’s nicest and most determined competitors.
Joe Leonard, a three-time AMA Grand National champion who went on to race Indy Cars, passed away on April 27, 2017 in a San Jose, California, nursing home at the age of 84. Leonard’s racing accomplishments were extremely rare, as the San Diego native won national championships on both two and four wheels.
Author Robert M. Pirsig died at his home today in South Berwick, Maine, he was 88 years old. Pirsig, best known for his philosophical work of non-fiction, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, An Inquiry Into Values, first published in 1974, spoke to a post-Vietnam/Watergate generation searching for truth and meaning during a tumultuous decade.
Flying into central Ohio in the middle of winter is less than inspiring, unless you happen to live there I suppose. I thought about that on my approach to Columbus International through a typical thick gray overcast that gave way to a marginally more translucent view of gray fields, gray highways, and gray buildings; the kind of views that could only inspire Russian novelists and other upbeat types.