World Superbike rider Dean Berta Vinales dies in crash aged 15
Rest in peace, Dean Berta Vinales
World Superbike rider Dean Berta Vinales has died after a horror crash in Jerez, aged just 15-years-old.
Following a serious incident in the opening round of the FIM Supersport 300 World Championships, World Superbike organisers confirmed that Vinales had died after he "suffered severe head and thoracic injuries" in the crash.
The teen - cousin of nine-time MotoGP race winner Maverick Vinales - was involved in a collision with Alejandro Carrion, Daniel Mogeda, Harry Khouri and Yeray Ruiz at turn two at the start of lap 11.
The race was immediately halted after stewards had red-flagged, with medical vehicles at the scene straight away. Vinales was attended to on the track, in the ambulance and at the circuit medical centre.
Around two hours after the crash had occurred, World Superbike [WorldSBK] announced in a statement that the young star had sadly passed away.
"The rider suffered severe head and thoracic injuries," the statement read.
"Medical vehicles arrived at the site immediately and the rider was attended to on track, in the ambulance and at the circuit Medical Centre.
"Despite the best efforts of the circuit medical staff, the Medical Centre has announced that Berta Vinales has sadly succumbed to his injuries."
Following the incident, the remainder of Saturday's action was cancelled with Kawasaki rider Jeffrey Buis declared the winner based on the results of the last completed lap.
There have been a number of emotional tributes posted on social media.
"We’re deeply saddened to report the loss of Dean Berta Vinales," WorldSBK tweeted.
"The #WorldSBK family sends love to his family, loved ones, and his team. Your personality, enthusiasm, and commitment will be hugely missed. The whole motorcycle racing world will miss you, Dean. Ride in Peace."
We’re deeply saddened to report the loss of Dean Berta Viñales.
The #WorldSBK family sends love to his family, loved ones, and his team. Your personality, enthusiasm, and commitment will be hugely missed.
The whole motorcycle racing world will miss you, Dean. Ride in Peace. pic.twitter.com/46KuUt4Vnl
— WorldSBK (@WorldSBK) September 25, 2021
On Instagram, Vinales Racing Team posted a photo of Vinales, captioned: "It's with the heaviest of hearts that we announce the passing of Dean Berta Viñales.
"We're devastated, and at this time all of our thoughts are with Dean's family.
"You'll be sorely missed and never forgotten, Dean ❤️."