Italian rider Antonelli dies in Moscow Supersport crash

Italian motorcycle rider, Andrea Antonelli, has died after crashing on the wet track during a World Supersport stage at Moscow Raceway on Sunday. The tragedy led to cancellation of all remaining events on the day, including the World Superbikes race.

The Supersport race at the Moscow Raceway circuit went ahead despite heavy rain, with the tragedy occurring in the last corner of the opening lap.  

Antonelli fell from his bike and was ran over by fellow countryman, Lorenzo Zanetti, who it seems couldn’t take evasive manoeuvres due to a severe lack of visibility.

The Kawasaki rider was immediately tended to by medics and a helicopter was ready to take him to hospital, but the injuries Antonelli received in the fall and collision were fatal.

The red flag was flown at the circuit after the crash, with organizers deciding to call off the day’s remaining events.

"The bike of the rider who was following the Italian hit him from behind. He received a blow at the base of the skull. First aid was immediately provided, after which Andrea was quickly moved to an emergency vehicle, where he was intubated. Unfortunately, all these measures were unsuccessful. The driver died at 14:10 MSK,”
Ruggiero Mattioli, World Superbike Championship’s chief medical officer, said in a statement.

"All the participants of the championship express their deepest condolences to Antonelli‘s family and friends at the tragic loss,"
he added.

Psychologists are currently working with Antonelli‘s father, who came to the Russian capital to support his 25-year-old son.

The heavy rain had started during the final laps of the first World Superbike race earlier in the day, which saw several top riders – including pole-holder, Davide Guigliano – crash out.

Organisers say they made the decision to continue racing in bad weather conditions after receiving confirmation from the World Superbike general sponsor, Dorna Sports.

Russia’s Investigative Committee is conducting a preliminary inquiry into the accident at the Moscow Raceway, in the Volokolamsky District of the Moscow Region.

Antonelli was sitting seventh in the World Supersport riders’ championship, with fourth place in Spain having been his best result this season.

The Italian secured four podiums in his Supersport career, and managed one victory in the smaller Superstock 600 class back in 2007.

The World Supersport was introduced as a supporting class to the Superbike World Championship in 1999.