Marco Simoncelli

Lap Of Honor And Two Minutes Of Noise As Simoncelli Tribute At Valencia

Marco Simoncelli is to receive a fitting tribute at Valencia on Sunday. Paolo Simoncelli, Marco's father, had asked for a minute of "casino" (an Italian word that translates as chaos or noise) instead of a minute of silence, but Marco is to get all this and a little more. At 10:10 local time (find that time in your timezone using this link) riders from 125, Moto2 and MotoGP have been invited to join a lap of honor at Valencia, led by Kevin Schwantz aboard Marco Simoncelli's Honda RC212V.

The lap of honor will be followed by the noise in Simoncelli's name: once all of the bikes have come to a standstill in front of the massed paddock, led by Simoncelli's family and his San Carlo Gresini team, two minutes of Valencian fireworks will ensue, a deafening racket of firecrackers.

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2011 Valencia MotoGP Thursday Round Up - Remembering Marco Simoncelli

It's a good thing that we're going to go racing again. Marco Simoncelli's tragic death at Sepang has cast a very heavy and very dark pall over the MotoGP paddock, and two weeks of inaction - the one thing that motorcycle racers cannot bear, along with just about everyone else in the paddock - meeting again at Valencia with the purpose of racing has given some direction again. Walking into the paddock at lunchtime today, the atmosphere was subdued, with journalists and team members holding quiet conversations everywhere, mostly on the subject of Marco Simoncelli, the crash in Sepang and their memories of the Italian.

The process of talking and the unfurling of tributes to the fallen Italian have been cathartic. His team had his bike in the pit box with the text "It has been an honor and a privilege to work with you" on a banner behind it, they also unfurled a banner above the media center with this number on it, the Ducati hospitality trucks have his number on them and the message "always in our hearts" and the number 58 is on stickers, badges and bikes everywhere. The activity, the discussions, the shared memories have started the process of healing the pain.

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Misano World Circuit To Be Named After Marco Simoncelli

The Misano World Circuit is to honor Marco Simoncelli by renaming itself after the Italian, who died in a tragic accident in Sepang. In a press statement issued today, the track announced that it was in talks with Simoncelli's family, the foundation that has been set up in his name and with the fan club to find the best way to name the circuit after Simoncelli.

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The Consequences Of Tragedy: MotoGP's Silly Season After Simoncelli's Death

The paddock is about to reconvene at the final round of the year at Valencia and return to the normal business of racing, or at least, as normal as possible less than two weeks after the death of Marco Simoncelli in a tragic accident at Sepang, and there are still a few empty seats to fill on the 2012 MotoGP grid. The slots at the Ducati, Honda and Yamaha factory teams are filled, as are the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha satellite seats, and of course Karel Abraham at the Cardion AB team, but beyond that, MotoGP's silly season for 2012 is still in full swing.

In a stroke of bitter irony, Marco Simoncelli's death gave the rider merry-go-round a bit more impetus. Simoncelli's place in the San Carlo Gresini Honda team had already been confirmed, complete with factory Honda RC213V and HRC contract. His death blows everything wide open again, and adds a massive number of complications. Though it is far too soon for Gresini to be signing contracts - Fausto Gresini was hit particularly hard by Simoncelli's death, as he was close to the Italian personally, and this was the second rider he has lost to a fatal crash, after Daijiro Kato back in 2003 - rider managers will be circling the Gresini pit box and making cautions enquiries as to the team's plans for 2012. As tragic as the loss of Marco Simoncelli is, life goes on, and riders will be racing next year, one of them from the garage destined for Simoncelli before his demise.

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Thousands Pay Final Respects To Marco Simoncelli At Moving Funeral

Marco Simoncelli was finally laid to rest on Thursday, amidst a massive crowd who had come to pay their last respects. The funeral was a packed affair, full of the friends and family of the Italian, as well as a large number of people from the world of motorcycle racing. The service, held in the Santa Maria Assunta church in the small town of Coriano, not far from the Misano circuit, started at 3pm and was led by the Bishop of Rimini, Francesco Lambiasi, when Simoncelli's coffin was carried in by friends and members of his San Carlo Gresini team. It ended a little over an hour afterwards, as Simoncelli was taken from the church, to the strains of Italian pop legend Vasco Rossi singing "Siamo solo noi". His body was taken to Cesena, where he is due to be cremated.

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Rossi's Manager Denies Retirement Rumors

Valentino Rossi is not set to retire, the Italian's manager, Davide Brivio confirmed on Twitter on Monday morning. In the aftermath of the crash that saw Marco Simoncelli killed, struck by both Colin Edwards and Valentino Rossi after being dragged across the track by his bike, rumors and speculation surged across the internet that the nine-time World Champion would hang up his helmet, upset at the death of his close friend Simoncelli.

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