Aston Martin driver Allan Simonsen has died following a heavy crash in the early stages of the Le Mans 24 hours. The Dane, who was 34 years of age, had been leading in the GTE Am class after starting from pole position.
Simonsen, in the No. 95 car, lost control at Tertre Rouge on the fourth lap of the race, impacting heavily with the trackside barriers. Early reports suggested a brief loss of consciousness, but race organisers later confirmed that he had been transported to the medical centre in a serious condition, before succumbing to his injuries.
A statement issued by the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) read:
“At 15h09 the No.95 Aston Martin Vantage GTE, driven by Allan Simonsen of Denmark, exited the track at high speed at the Tertre Rouge corner on his fourth lap of the race.
The driver was immediately attended on the scene by the doctors from the Automobile Club de l’Ouest’s Medical Service.
In a serious condition, Allan Simonsen was transferred immediately to the Circuit Medical Centre where he died soon after due to his injuries.
The Automobile Club de l’Ouest wishes to express its great sadness following this incident, and extends its deepest condolences to the family and those close to Allan Simonsen.
The Automobile Club de l’Ouest will make no further statement while the exact reasons for the accident are still being wholly determined.”
Simonsen’s family has requested that all Aston Martin entries continue the race.
Simonsen’s death is the first at Le Mans since 1997 when Sébastien Enjolras died in pre-qualifying, while Jo Gartner was the last driver to be killed during the race in 1986.