The racing world is in mourning due to the loss of champion Kurt Caselli over the weekend in the grueling Baja 1000.
Initially, social media feeds went into overdrive as speculation mounted that Caselli died as a result of man-made “obstacle” being placed on the course; however, that turned out to not be the case. The 30-year-old Caselli lost control of his bike at mile 792 of the 833-mile race which is noted for being one of the most grueling and challenging courses in the world.
Caselli was in second place when it appears he hit a small animal which sent his bike out of control. The well-respected three-time world champion had recently signed a new deal with KTM and gotten engaged to Sarah Jean White, whom he considered the love of his life, in Paris a few weeks ago. He had competed in Dakar and Morocco in recent months.
KTM teammate, Ivan Ramirez, was one of the first at the scene and a helicopter was radioed to airlift the downed racer. It was when the KTM crew recovered the bike that animal remains were discovered which led to speculation that he had hit the animal. The wreck occurred near a sandy section of the course and he suffered serious head trauma and was pronounced dead at Ensenada.
“He had the uncanny ability to bring a team together for efforts big and small,” said KTM team manager Antti Kallonen. “Professional motorcycle racing is always considered an individual sport, but Kurt made it a team sport.”
Caselli was so well regarded in the sport that he had some of the same sponsors that he did when he first began racing at the age of 10.
Rob Dingman, president of the American Motorcyclist Association, released the following statement: “Kurt Caselli was a gracious competitor, a team leader and a fan favorite. His love for motorcycling showed through in everything he did, whether he was leading his fellow racers as the U.S. team captain for the International Six Days Enduro or signing autographs for a young fan.”
The Caselli family has invited all family, friends and fans of Kurt to attend his Memorial Ride Day on December 6, 2013 at Glen Helen Raceway from 10:00am to 3:00pm – 18585 Verdemont Ranch Rd, San Bernardino, CA 92407.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Kurt’s friends and family.
Russ Brown Motorcycle Attorneys®