Tributes for racer who lost his life during powerboat championship finals

Following

the tragic death of P1 Powerboat racer Mike Lovell, who lost his life whilst

competing in the finals of the

National Powerboat Racing Championship in Weymouth Bay, tributes have been

pouring in from across the marine world.

As well

as a highly successful racer, Mike was described as a talented mechanic, always

keen to learn and develop.

Mike Lovell suffered

multiple injuries when his boat, Peters & May, crashed in the P1 250 Superstock race on Sunday. Mike’s team-mate, Dan Whapples has

undergone surgery today at Southampton General Hospital, where he is reported

to be in a stable condition.

Portland Coastguard

rescued the racers from the water, near Weymouth Town Beach and the harbour.

Lovell was airlifted to Southampton General Hospital, however, it was announced

that Mr Lovell had sadly died overnight.

Former powerboat

world champion, Shelley Jory-Leigh, was commentating at the event and saw what

happened. “Unfortunately the boat just got caught up in the wash of the

other boats – that’s what happens with powerboat racing – and it barrel-rolled.

The drivers got thrown clear of the boat. It’s like a Formula 1 car spinning

off.”

Ms Jory-Leigh said

the safety teams were “absolutely amazing” with rescue divers

deployed within 30 seconds of the accident.

Lovell and Whapples

had enjoyed a successful season with a second place at the P1 Plymouth event

and a third place in the Cowes-Poole endurance race.

Organisers of the P1

SuperStock UK Championship cancelled the Weymouth race and a report has been

made to the Marine Accident Investigation Branch.