Veteran racer Yoshinari Matsushita has died after crashing in a practice session for the 2013 Isle of Man TT.
Matsushita crashed his Suzuki GSX-R600 at the Ballacyre section of the Isle of Man’s Mountain Course. He was trying to prepare to compete in the TT’s Supersport class for Tyco Suzuki.
“Everyone within our team is devastated about tonight’s terrible events,” says Philip Neil, team manager. “We were very much looking forward to working with Yoshinari during TT2013 and pass on our deepest condolences to his family and fellow team members.”
Matsushita first competed in the Isle of Man TT in 2009 and has since been a regular competitor in the Superstock and Superbike classes. In 2011, Matsushita also competed in the TT Zero.
“Yoshi was a really popular competitor who had a large number of friends in the TT Races paddock,” says Gary Thompson, MBE, and clerk of the course for TT organizer ACU Events. “He was a genuine and friendly character who always had time for everyone. He will be sorely missed.”
The 43-year-old Matsushita was a late entry to the 2013 Isle of Man TT, having only been announced by his team earlier in the day.
“I think to be honest, I was surprised,” Matsushita said when he was announced by the Tyco Suzuki squad. “As a member of this great team for the TT, I draw the full power to be able to use their experience to fight this monster course at best. I did not ever think a miracle like this would ever happen.”
The session was red flagged following the crash. The Isle of Man’s Coroner of Inquests has been contact and an investigation into the accident is underway.