Aussie MotoGP star Jack Miller is sick of paying tribute to dead teenagers and has urged authorities to make the sport safer.
Australian MotoGP star Jack Miller has called for stricter safety measures for young riders after 15-year-old Dean Berta Vinales died in a horror crash.
The teenage motorcyclist — a cousin of MotoGP rider Maverick Vinales — was killed on the weekend during a race at the Jerez circuit in Spain. He was involved in an accident during the first race of the WorldSSP300 class and died of chest and head injuries, championship organisers said in a statement.
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The tragedy comes after 14-year-old European Talent Cup rider Hugo Millan and 19-year-old Moto3 Jason Dupasquier also died from accidents earlier this year.
Maverick withdrew from the Grand Prix of the Americas in the wake of his cousin’s death and Miller, who sits fifth in the MotoGP standings, says he’s “getting sick” of attending moments of silence for young riders who have lost their lives.
Miller said while the classes and quality of racing are “fantastic” at junior level, more needs to be done to protect the sport’s youngest participants.
“Those bikes aren’t very fast and there’s so many of them, and those bikes are not light by any stretch of the imagination,” Miller told Motortsport.com.
“For sure it’s a lot of weight and there’s so many of them on the grid that, when something does unfortunately go wrong, the chance of something bad happening is for sure doubled or tripled.
“But there has to be a big step taken in looking at the safety, at the way these races go and this can’t continue on.
“This year’s been especially bad, but this can’t continue on. We can’t have three young kids in the space of not even nine months losing their lives.
“It’s atrocious and I think I stand on behalf of everybody in saying I’m getting sick and tired going to these minute of silences for kids that were so, so young.
“It’s just so bad, so for sure this can’t continue on. It can’t, no way.”
Fellow MotoGP star Aleix Espargaro suggested increasing the age limit of competitors and making them practise more on minibikes before graduating to more complex machinery.
Dean Berta Vinales was racing for the Vinales Racing Team, managed by Angel Vinales, Maverick’s father.