Allan Simonsen 1978-2013
Le Mans is always an exciting race for many race fans and for me it is one of the highlights of the year. However, it is with a heavy heart I sit here and write this with just a few hours left to run in the race as I find it difficult to put into words.
Just a couple of laps into the start of the race an impact with the barriers at Tetre Rouge for the number 95 Aston Martin driven by Danish driver Allan Simonsen saw a prolonged safety car period. However it was to be revealed that sadly Allan had succumbed to injuries sustained in the incident and had lost his life.
It is a huge shock that the talented driver has had his life cut so cruelly short. But his Aston Martin team have continued to race at the request of his family and will hopefully go on to take victory in his honour.
Allan was a popular driver within the British GT championship driving for the Rosso Verde team which is where I saw him compete most and had the pleasure to capture him on camera. His talent was clear to see and was without doubt one of the most exciting drivers in the championship. He was always pushing the car as hard as possible and even beyond its limits.
Time spent in Australia racing GT and V8 supercars, where he won the Australian GT Championship in 2007, along with spells in Le Mans and American Le Mans series showed just how good Allan was and seven Le Mans 24 hour appearances with two podium finishes underlined that. Driving for the works Aston Martin team showed just how highly regarded as a racing driver he was.
Allan will be greatly missed by so many and my heartfelt condolences go to his family and friends and my thoughts are with them during this difficult time.
Rest In Peace Allan Simonsen. Gone but not forgotten.